9:55 AM

O.K., now this is really, really insane

Let’s see if I am missing something here. The State of Nebraska convicts a guy of vehicular HOMICIDE and throws him in the slammer four years ago after drinking, driving and killing a man. So far, I understand...do the crime...do the time.

But in an effort to “rehabilitate” this guy, while he was still in jail, local corrections officials and the FAA allowed Barry Greg Caughlin to climb in an airplane by himself and head off into the wild blue yonder for flight training, according to a report by local NBC news.

A Corrections spokesman said inmates taking part in educational release programs are carefully screened and constantly monitored. And in case [Caughlin] gets the urge to “fly the coop”, they noted that he's under the watchful eye of an instructor and, when flying solo, he's being tracked on radar.
As this felon builds time toward his private pilot certificate, there is another twist that will boggle your mind. Caughlin can't get a driver's license until 2011!! But the FAA says there's "nothing stopping him" from being a pilot.

What about the freakin’ prison cell door, hmmm?

As a guy who was run off the road and damn near killed years ago by a drunk driver, I have zero pity for these clowns when they get caught. And to give one the keys to an airplane and let him enjoy the same freedom as all of us other law-abiding licensed pilots is well beyond any possible level of my comprehension.

I’m all for trying to reform some of these guys, and I believe there are people out there that made a terrible choice one night and now has to pay society back. According to the NDCS website, Caughlin is slated for release 3-1-2006, so why the hell couldn’t they wait until he’s again a free bird and let him drop his own dime for flight training on his own accord?

Here is the NDCS contact if you wish to write them a letter. Wouldn’t bother calling them, you’ll get nowhere fast in their phone maze.

Nebraska Department of Correctional Services
P.O. Box 94661
Lincoln, NE 68509-4661
(402) 471-2654

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