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June 14, 2013

"Woman arrested 396 times sentenced to mental health and substance abuse program"

The title of this post is the headline of this notable little local story out of Chicago which provides some more proof concerning the inefficiencies and inefficacies of modern criminal justice systems. Here are the basics:

An Uptown woman who has been arrested 396 times meekly offered her gratitude and apologies to a Cook County judge Monday as she took a plea deal that will send her to a mental health and substance abuse treatment program.

“All of us are reaching out to you and offering you, maybe for the first time in your life, a hand, OK?” Judge Peggy Chiampas told Shermain Miles. “But you’ve got to reach out and grab all of our hands as well.”

Miles, who was dressed in a bright yellow prison jumpsuit, kept her hands behind her back and politely answered Chiampas’ questions. She told the judge, “I just want to thank you.”

“I’m not that person,” said Miles, 51, who has previously been known to shriek in courthouse lockups.

Miles has been at Logan Correctional Center in Lincoln since December.  She’d been released in April 2011 after serving thee years for an armed robbery conviction but was arrested several more times while on parole, triggering her return to prison.

Among the reasons for her later arrests was an alleged attack on Ald. James Cappleman (46th) last summer.  Miles pleaded guilty in that case Monday and in two separate cases of trespassing and drinking alcohol on a public way.

Chiampas sentenced Miles to time served for all three, but she said she only did so because Miles said she’d submit to a mental health evaluation and follow-up treatment, as well as treatment for alcohol abuse, at the Lincoln prison.

A representative from Cappleman’s office attended the hearing, and a prosecutor said the alderman is satisfied with the deal.  Adam Monreal, chairman of the Illinois Prisoner Review Board, also attended the morning hearing but couldn’t immediately say how the deal will affect Miles’ release from prison.

Annoyingly, this story does not explain why or how this woman has managed to get arrested 396 times (and I am actually a little suspect concerning this accounting because it would mean she was getting arrested, on average, at least once a month, every month, of her entire adult life without having faced any serious criminal justice consequences). 

Nevertheless, anyone who gets arrested even dozens of times obviously has major difficulty living as a law-abiding person and likely has mental health and substance abuse problems.  It should not take decades and hundreds of arrests for the criminal justice system to develop some programming that would effectively rehabilitate or more effectively incapacitate a person who is obviously a menace to local law enforcement and perhaps many others.

June 14, 2013 at 10:48 AM | Permalink


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I almost thought I read that she had voted 396 times in Cook County.

-- My mistake, only dead people and the elderly can vote that many times in Chicagoland.

"[approximately] 20,640 dead people remain on the voter rolls in Cook County" {2012}]
"Mazo, the Herald-Tribune reporter, later said that he found names of the dead who had voted in Chicago, along with 56 people from one house."

-- . . . or of the same household . . .

"the Chicago Tribune wrote that "the election of November 8 was characterized by such gross and palpable fraud..."
“This past spring, two election workers were prosecuted by the State’s Attorney General and convicted of vote fraud ...Cook County’s director of elections, Jan Kralovee, says"
"In 2002, dozens of Chicago's senior citizens applied for absentee ballots, only to discover that the man who was helping them to apply had already filled in the ballots. As the Chicago Sun-Times reported, when the seniors asked him what he was doing, he answered: "Don't worry, you're voting Democratic.""

~~ championnews.net; dailycaller.com/2010/10/22/cook-county-voting-fraud-could-pose-threat-in-illinois-senate-race; pewstates.org; wikipedia

Posted by: Adamakis | Jun 14, 2013 2:54:20 PM

Just curious to know why you rambled on about voter fraud after you realized you'd misread the headline.

Posted by: JohnK | Jun 15, 2013 12:47:13 PM


Do some reading up on this woman. She is an attention whore to the Nth degree. She plays with the CJ system because she loves the attention, simple as that. In modern parlance she is a CJ "troll". She'll say anything and then be right back on the street doing it again. She is quite crafty because she knows just how far to push the system so she never does anything serious but far enough so that she gets the attention she wants. She is infamous for refusing to do interviews with the press unless they pay her big money because she is a "celebrity."

There is no cure for this woman because she is not sick. She has found her niche in life and this behavior pattern is it.

Posted by: Daniel | Jun 15, 2013 3:36:23 PM

I jest! 'Twas long-winded, 'tis true.

Posted by: Adamakis | Jun 15, 2013 5:11:34 PM

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