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Letters to the Editors

Deputy should have had support

© St. Petersburg Times
published February 16, 2003

Editor: Re: Deputy cleared in October fatal shooting, Feb. 6 Times.

I would like to express my feelings on the recent clearing of Deputy Scott Lamia by a grand jury. I cannot understand some of the people in this community! To criticize a young man for doing his job is amazing.

It is obvious the decision that the deputy made was the right one. After hearing all the facts, 15 members of our community cleared him. Let us not forget there are more facts to this case that were not written in the newspapers, and if they had been, everyone who is quick to bash would have nothing to say.

I have one question for all of the people who have a problem with this incident. What would you be complaining about if the deputy would have not done his job and the man who was under the influence and suicidal would have kept on and ended up killing an innocent child playing in the street? Then you would be trashing the Sheriff's Office for not being there to stop the man, who had several arrests against him.

One day you may need help from one of our deputies, and even after all the negative remarks that have been made, they will still be there to protect you and your family.

No one deserves to be treated the way this deputy was for doing his job, by the newspapers and some people of our community. Ignorance to the complete story should give no rights to badger another human being. I pray those who help keep helping and that those who need help accept it.
-- Arleen Semegen, Spring Hill

Shooting an unarmed man is not a justified act

Editor: Re: Deputy cleared in October fatal shooting, Feb. 6 Times.

Since when is shooting and killing an unarmed citizen in the back of the head considered to be self-defense?

Despite the fact there were two independent eyewitnesses to the killing, the grand jury has decided to pass the buck to Hernando County Sheriff Richard Nugent. And despite the fact the grand jury calls this killing "unnecessary and avoidable," Deputy Scott Lamia will be given his gun and probably be back on the street by the time you read this.

The grand jury stated that Sheriff Nugent take appropriate disciplinary action. But Nugent's investigators have already stated the shooting was justified. Therefore, how can there possibly be any appropriate disciplinary action taken in the future?

And considering that Deputy Lamia already was involved in two prior incidents in which he fired his weapon at other unarmed citizens, how can we expect Sheriff Nugent to take proper action this time?

Hopefully, the citizens of Hernando County will remember this case and the lack of action by Sheriff Nugent and his investigators come election time in November 2004. Richard Nugent should not be reelected sheriff.
-- Peter Dalessandro, Spring Hill

Months in spotlight must have been hard for deputy

Editor: Re: Deputy cleared in October fatal shooting, Feb. 6 Times.

I'm sure it has been a long four months for Deputy Scott Lamia to wait for the grand jury results, and I am so glad he has been cleared and the jurors felt his actions were warranted.

After following this case in the newspapers, I find it sad to think that a person who's only wish is to protect our community has to go through such a horrendous ordeal.

I think it's so unfortunate that so much attention is paid to deputies' actions in these cases, when the real responsibility lies with the suspect who chooses to fight, escape, etc. They are the ones who create the life-threatening situations.
-- Bonnie Uehlinger, Spring Hill

We're all people, please stop judging Timber Pines

Editor: I am always reading about the residents in Timber Pines, but just have to tell you readers that my husband and I live on our Social Security and are limited to what we can spend, just like a lot of other people.

I would like to know what you all have against us, and how come no one ever questions the people at Seven Hills, Silverthorne, Glen Lakes and other communities. We pay higher taxes in here, and do our own roads, etc. I wish you would think of a lot of other people outside of this residential area.

We are all alike; we are just ordinary people.
-- Dorothy Phillips, Spring Hill

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