Friday, February 10, 2006

Borf in the hoosegow

DCist first and then the WaPo report that Borf will be doing 30 days in a DC jail.

The teenage graffiti vandal known as Borf got tagged yesterday -- with 30 days in the D.C. jail and a dressing-down that no one in the courtroom will soon forget.

Borf, aka John Tsombikos, chose not to address the judge who was deciding his fate. But D.C. Superior Court Judge Lynn Leibovitz had a lot to say to the young anarchist from Northern Virginia. She didn't paint a pretty picture.

"You profess to despise rich people," she said. "You profess to despise the faceless, nameless forms of government that oppress. That's what you've become. That's what you are. You're a rich kid who comes into Washington and defaces property because you feel like it. It's not fair. It's not right."
And the judge keeps on...
The 30-day jail term is just the start. If Tsombikos breaks the law again within the next three years, he could be jailed for the 17 suspended months of his sentence. Regardless, he has to complete 200 hours of community service, including 80 hours of cleaning up graffiti. And he must pay $12,000 in restitution, money that better not come out of his parents' bank accounts, the judge said.

"In other words," she said, "not the bogus jobs that your father gives you in New York . . . a real job, going to work like the people you demean, earning it with paychecks and the sweat of your own brow."

But it was the prospect of a month at the jail that most worried Madden, who had asked for probation and pleaded with the judge to at least send Tsombikos to a halfway house.

She wouldn't budge, and she made it clear why.

"I want him to see what the inside of the D.C. jail looks like," she said, "because unlike every other person you've seen in my courtroom this morning, who have a ninth-grade education, who are drug-addicted, who have had childhoods the likes of which you could not conceive, you come from privilege and opportunity and seem to think that the whole world is just like McLean and just like East 68th Street."

"Well," she said, "it's not."
The prospect of seeing what the inside of a DC jail looks like is a terrible visual to me; it will be eye-opening to see what this month will do to Mr. Tsombikos' future.

There's also a firestorm of comments going on at DCist; read them and add your comment here.

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