Our system worked as intended

Published 10:04 am Wednesday, May 15, 2013

It was a lengthy process — and not everyone will be happy with the results — but it certainly appears that our nation’s criminal justice system worked as intended when it comes to the murder case against Megan Goff.

Regardless of how an individual feels about the innocence or guilt of Goff, a woman who is accused of shooting and killing her husband in 2006, it would be difficult to argue that she did not receive due process and a fair chance under our legal system. Goff was originally found guilty by a judge in May, but that conviction was correctly overturned due to what was essentially a procedural error. She was then found guilty by a jury of her peers right here in Lawrence County in 2011. Goff appealed that verdict to an appellate court that upheld the original jury conviction. Recently the Ohio Supreme Court reviewed a request to hear the case and declined to do so, basically saying the appeal was without legal merit.

This is certainly a tragic situation with no winners. Bill Goff had his life cut short. Megan Goff will serve nearly two decades behind bars. The couple’s children have essentially lost both their parents. The public may never know exactly what occurred that March night or all the details of a marriage gone wrong that led to the tragedy.

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But, as Americans, it is encouraging to know that even though the outcome isn’t always what is desired, the process itself works as our founding fathers intended with due process.