A family-owned daily newspaper serving Riverton, Lander and Fremont County, Wyoming since 1949

Swift and severe

Jul 26, 2013 - By Steven R. Peck

The perpetrators of Thursday's break-in and robbery will face stern consequences

An alarming view of an underside of Fremont County life felt the glare of public attention Thursday.

An armed person or persons entered a Riverton residence, where a child was present, and fired a high-powered weapon, then, apparently, pulled an armed robbery at a Riverton business minutes later.

There are many kinds of crime, and a community of Fremont County's size is susceptible to all of them. But there is something "special" about a crime involving a drawn weapon, gunshots, invading a home, and forceable, face-to-face robbery.

These are serious crimes, frightening crimes, deeply disruptive crimes, and they deserve to be met with stern response through the orderly structure of our community.

That's a roundabout way of saying "throw the book at them."

Law-enforcement was immediate in its response Thursday, and the community hopes it will produce concrete results.

Cell phones, security cameras and sharp eyes make it harder for the criminal to do this type of bad business. All those factors can be put to the public good as this investigation continues.

Only the most innocent, ignorant or naive citizen thinks in this day and age that armed confrontations between criminals and victims cannot happen here.

They can, they always have, and they always will.

But the criminal offender is equally naive if he thinks that this sort of conduct can be carried off in the homes, businesses and on the streets of our city without consequences. If they do harbor those beliefs, civil society is the winner when they are proved wrong.

This wasn't as bad as it might have been, but it was bad enough. Law enforcement authorities are asking for the public's eyes, ears and recollections in apprehending these criminals. When they are found, may they face swift, decisive and severe consequences.

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