Michael Sean Quinn, Ph.D, J.D., Etc.
Quinn and Quinn
1300 West Lynn #208
Austin, Texas 78703
(o) 512-296-2594
(c) 512-656-9759

There is a good deal of reporting and research these days indicating that the prison population is growing these days.Some have said it results from drug use. Others say is simply the fact that the population is aging. 

I’m not sure that the numbers show.  One report says that inmates 54 and older have gone from 3% of the prison population to 8%.  That doesn’t tell us very much.  For one thing, if the number have to do with 54 to 57, we don’t know anything that is going on with the really aging–those between 67 and 72, for example. 

I have some additional suggestions. First, and most significantly, prison for older fellows (and maybe women too) doesn’t hold the threat it did when one was a kid or a young man. Getting locked away then, meant no career, no wife, no family, no golf, no parties, and so on and on.  For some body 70, say, none of those things may matter much. Wife may be gone in some sense or another.  The kids have grown and moved to Shenanigan, N.J.. Parties are a bore. Bottles of Jack Daniels give nothing but awful hangovers. Weed hasn’t been fun for years. Jail is a rest, if not a resting place. 

Second, would it be surprising if some of the crimes sending really aging folks to the clink were not revenge crimes.  Hubby murders the younger mistress who cost him his marriage.  So what, he says.  He’s 75. He’s not going anyplace fast. She, on the other hand, is only 50 and has ruined a lot of lives and left him, shall we say, very short of change. 

Why not embezzlement? Why not devise a crime that would be a lot of fun and then try it? Why not pilfer a little bit of the client’s money? Take it out of the trust account.  She won’t really miss it, and, besides, she always been a greedy bitch, and he got most of the money for her anyway by ripping through if not off her third husband.

Third, it is a good idea to keep in mind that many aging people pride themselves on their acquired wisdom and resent its not being recognized and honored. Some of them might have the idea that they can commit a crime, especially an ingenious one that’s lots of fun and get away with it.  Of course, if he gets away with it once; he’ll try again. Pride invites. Pride grows. Pride errs. Pride falls. 

Still  he says to himself, “I’ll only have to pay for one of these, and even if I have to do more time, so what.  I don’t have that much left anyway, and this will be a entirely new experience. Even fallen pride and its aftermath can be exhilarating. 

Lawyers having specialized in criminal defense work will actually have fantasized about how to commit close to perfect crimes that at least some of them would love giving it a go. Surely the John Graham types of the world have thought of this many time. In fact they already done it in a fictional sense. 

Of course, there is no evidence to support any of this.  Still, it would be more fun for a professor somewhere to contemplate and research this topics that all the boring stuff  with which they are stuck. 

I can imagine the title of the peer reviewed journal article right now: Aging Lawyer and Passionate Incarceration  Embracement–A Statistical Study.Or what about this: Postmodern Medications of Passion Murders By Ancient Attorneys.

I think I’ll go back to graduate school. Should I go in sociology? Or should I go to the special program on Anthropological Studies of the Bar(s). I understand they have a special course on aging lawyers around the world and another the cross-cultural mathematics–whatever that is–of legal fees.