OFFICIAL STATEMENT FROM THE ETHICAL SOCIETY OF POLICE
Murder is the ultimate violent act. The decision of Circuit Judge Michael Noble to sentence Justin Mathews to roughly five years, with a possible release at twenty-one, is unacceptable for an armed carjacking and subsequent murder. We don’t condone light sentences for murder for anyone under these circumstances.
We understand there has to be a balance with sentencing juveniles and rehabilitation, especially in light of the disproportionate sentences of minorities; however, families who have to go on deserve better than this sentence.
When Sergeant Ralph Harper was a sergeant with the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department, he mentored officers, demanded officers around him be fair and disciplined in our actions. The President of the Ethical Society of Police was one of those he mentored.
The sentence today is disheartening and saddens many of us in the Ethical Society of Police.
Rest in Peace, Sgt. Harper. Our prayers are with his family.
Ethical Society of Police
ABOUT THE ETHICAL SOCIETY OF POLICE
The Ethical Society of Police (E.S.O.P.) is an association of police officers, park rangers, and civilians that advocates for racial and gender equity in the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department (SLMPD) and St. Louis County Police Department. The E.S.O.P. was founded in 1972 to address racial biases within law enforcement. The E.S.O.P. also works to improve community/police relations, develop policies and programs to reduce crime, elevate the status of minority civilians and police officers, encourage greater minority employment by law enforcement agencies, and increase professionalism in law enforcement. Membership is open to all races and includes nearly 300 law enforcement professionals employed by the City and County of St. Louis. For details, call (314) 690-3565, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.esopstl.org.