EDITORIAL: A paltry exchange

Outside a courthouse Friday, the grief-stricken family of stabbing victim Harmin (Harvey) Hans said the sentence was too light. We agree.

Outside a courthouse Friday, the grief-stricken family of stabbing victim Harmin (Harvey) Hans said the five-year sentence handed to a man involved in his death was too light.

We agree.

The circumstances surrounding Hans’ slaying were not a series of unforeseen, unplanned events that ultimately unfolded into manslaughter.

Amrit Gill and Shavinder Brar “deliberately orchestrated” a confrontation in the early morning hours of May 24, 2008, out of vengeance after Hans had a fight with Brar’s brother.

Gill and Brar, along with several friends, waited until Hans came home and then confronted him.

They had brought a knife and a Taser. Witnesses said they saw Gill holding a shiny object before the fight, and heard him advise Brar how to confront Hans.

While they may not have intended to kill Hans, the fact they had a knife would indicate they were prepared to commit extreme violence.

While the judge could not determine which of the two men stabbed Hans in the neck, he held them equally accountable, and sentenced Gill to five years, which is the same term Brar received after previously pleading guilty.

The judge also noted that while Gill apologized in court, his regret seemed to be focused on his presence there that night, and the effects the events have had upon him and his family. He showed little remorse over the fact that he helped take Hans’ life.

The family of Harvey Hans understandably feels justice has not been delivered in this case.

If they qualify for early release, Gill and Brar will likely serve much less than five years in jail.

It is a paltry exchange for snuffing out a promising young man’s life.