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Adult, two teens charged with setting Roslindale playground on fire

Updated with info that one of the suspects is not a kid.

Boston Police report arresting a 23-year-old man and two teens on arson charges for a May 23 fire that destroyed most of the playground equipment at the Sumner School on Basile Street in Roslindale.

Two of the three - a 14-year-old boy and a 16-year-old, both from Roslindale - had their arraignments scheduled for June 17, the Suffolk County District Attorney's office reports. Paperwork for the adult suspect has yet to be filed with the court; Boston Police declined to identify him.

Police did not say whether they are also the same three suspects spotted near the playground after a smaller fire the month before.

Parents and school employees are raising funds to replace the destroyed equipment.

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Comments

If the suspects are found guilty of the arson, I'm assuming (hoping) the city and school can go after their parents for the cost of rebuilding the destroyed playground?

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It looks like the kids need an activity to keep them busy such as cleaning trash up from parks. They can pay back the community through community service.

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the playground that the juveniles in question set on fire is probably a good idea, assuming, of course, that it's their first offense. If, however, these juveniles already have police records to begin with, somewhat tougher punishment might be in order, and it would have to be brought to their parents' attention..

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That's one approach. Although, probably not the most effective at repairing the harm or teaching the young people a lesson. Many juvenile judges have been implementing restorative justice and discipline. It's a process where young people must face the people they have harmed and make it right. They actually learn a lesson (instead of their parents taking responsibility). It may be that through the restorative process the young people will have to work to pay off some or all of the damage. This way the family isn't burdened by a large fine that would be hard for most people to pay and the young people actually learn a lesson. Plus, they don't have a record following them around. They use restorative justice out in Lexington all the time. In fact a young person threw a makeshift bomb at a school administrator's house once and they even used restorative justice with that case.

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I'm all for restorative justice but only after the playground is restored. If the parents have the means to pay for the replacement (even if it's a hardship) at least the other kids who didn't set things on fire will have a nice place to play.

Lets not forget that it's the other kids who lost their playground who are the ones currently "paying" for this crime, as are the people who are chipping in to help rebuild which comes out their own pockets.

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by being one of the laborers rebuilding the playground they destroyed. Yes?

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The city should pay to rebuild the playground. Whatever the cost is, pass it onto the three boys in the form of a 10 year loan (+3% for inflation) with them needing to pay back at least 10% every year.

If the contractor hired to rebuild the playground wants to hire the kids, great. Otherwise they can get a job at Dunkins. (And maybe arrange to bring coffee to the workers and teachers.)

It's true -- no reason to destroy the kid's lives over something they might have done as a stupid prank. But no reason to make others (parents, other kids, etc) pay for their misjudgment either.

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Setting fire to a playground, especially if it's in a densely-populated area with many residences and/or businesses, and schools is not just simply a stupid prank. It's a vicious prank that puts everybody around, be they in residences, businesses or schools, in mortal danger. The kids who are juveniles should do some community service as some sort of restitution, to help pay for the restoration of the playground, but the 23-year-old needs to be tried as an adult. Not saying that any of the three people who did this should have their lives totally destroyed by something like that, but the 23-year-old does need an even firmer hand, since he is an adult, and not a juvenile.

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Did I miss something?

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being one of the ones who set fire to that playground.

The next to the last post down towards the bottom of this thread mentions it.

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Two of the suspects are juvenile males, ages 16 and 14, while the third suspect, whose name is being withheld by police, is 23 years old.

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Were people really in mortal danger?

They should all have to help rebuild the playground and then be set to do other community service as well.

As for the 23yo; I would prefer to find out why he/she is hanging with 14yo kids in the first place.

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I guess I was looking at it as they'd be rebuilding something they destroyed and at the same time, learning a skill that will be useful in their future. I don't see this form of community service as destroying their lives.

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In fact, it could be quite beneficial to the kids in question who are juveniles, and, as has been said, could teach them a lifelong skill(s), as well as taking responsibility for one's actions and behaviors.

The 23-year-old, on the other hand, as I said before, may need some somewhat tougher punishment--community service, but with a short jail sentence, as well.

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Punitive justice just teaches kids that might makes right, and often throws them in with adult criminals who double down on that lesson.

Restorative justice teaches responsibility for behavior - something they sometimes don't - or won't - learn from their parents.

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...we need a new law on the books that says they can.

- The Original SoBo Yuppie

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Just cause the kids did something stupid does not mean the parents should pay the price. Kids should be held accountable for their own actions. You can't blame the parents at this point they no right from wrong. We need to stop coddling these kids and make them pay a price for the bad decisions they have make. We have become a soft society passing the buck on everyone else.

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The report states one suspect is 23.

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The report states one suspect is 23.

Since the 23-year-old is no juvenile, he should have some tougher punishment. He's an adult, and therefore should be tried as one, and punished accordingly, especially if he already has an adult criminal record.

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Might not be someone who is considered to be responsible for himself or herself.

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This is right behind the post office - if that had caught on fire, this would be a much, much bigger crime, right? I assume burning a post office is a federal case with higher penalties than a little recreational arson.

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Let's be honest, it'll be a slap on the wrist and that;s it

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I was thinking a couple of 12 or 13 year olds.

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Hope these arsonists can turn their lives around before they hurt someone. Just don't understand crimes against innocent young children.

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either the report has a typo on the third suspect's age of 23 or he/she may be intellectually challenged. The report title does reference 3 minors.....

Maybe Adam can get it resolved for us.

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Jeez, you'd think if I can write (more or less), I could read, too - I completely missed that last line in the BPD post. I'll check into it.

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Fortunately, somebody did a screen capture of the BPD report this AM, and it specifically said "three juveniles," but NOW reads one suspect is 23, so if nothing else, my mind isn't completely going.

Now enough with my self-absorption and back to the news.

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the one where you learned to read good and do lots of other stuff good too.

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, setting playgrounds on fire. I don't need to hear anymore.

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