An unfortunate thing happened to LeRoy Iverson the other day. His seven year old daughter, Sherrice, was raped and murdered while he was gambling in a Las Vegas casino. She was playing hide and seek at 3:48am with an 18 year old teenaged boy. Video surveillance cameras show her running into an arcade restroom, and moments later they show a man following her into the restroom. What happened then will legally be decided at the trial of Jeremy Strohmeyer, but Sherrice ended up dead.

LeRoy was pretty upset about the matter, so disturbed in fact that he asked for funeral expenses, another $100 in chips, a six pack of beer, and an airline ticket home or he might sue. After all, gambling casinos present a friendly and family type atmosphere in their advertising. A man wouldn't expect his daughter to get strangled while the family was enjoying its hospitality. You could see how put out he was about her death spoiling his vacation. Life sure can get irksome.

Not only that, but the casino's security guards had twice bothered him earlier about the fact Sherrice was running around unsupervised. Once they'd even pestered his fourteen year old son and handed over Sherrice to his care. That sure was wrong, giving one child over to the custody of another, but then you know how uncaring and incompetent hired help is these days.

All the casino had to do was what colleges have been doing for decades. It's called en loco parentis, which means something like the college is responsible for the minor when the parent is absent. You just can't get people to live up to their responsibilities these days.

No, LeRoy's trip was ruined because somebody else hadn't done his job. And the police had been so bothersome, wondering why he allowed his seven year old daughter to stay up all night. It's a free country, isn't it? If a man wants to teach his kids that they can miss a little sleep and have fun at night as well as the day, hey, that's his right. If the casino's employees had done their job properly, he'd still be peacefully gambling, hoping to make a little money to take home with them.

The police had even hinted he might be charged with child abuse. What for? He hadn't abused anybody. Thank heaven the NAACP had come around to help. They were sure going to make it clear the casino played a major role in Sherrice's murder. It had implicitly promised safety for him and his family, and given him a false sense of security. Just being bothered three times by them to look after his daughter wasn't enough. No indeed.

Now reading and hearing what I have about the case may perhaps have biased me about it. After all, the facts aren't in, and media reporting is notoriously inaccurate. I think the eighteen year old boy charged should be tried as an adult and, if found guilty, put to death.

As for the rest of it, I don't know LeRoy and have nothing against him. But I do have two grandsons who are three and five, respectively, and I have a son who fathered them. For all I know, maybe he likes to play poker, blackjack, craps, or bet on the roulette wheel. But if he ignored either of my grandsons while gambling at a casino, and one of them was dead, I'd tell the police to lock him up and throw away the key. My son happens to be white, but that doesn't matter. If he were black, I'd tell them exactly the same thing.

And I hope the rest of the world agrees with me.

Sam Orr sorr@metrolink.net
World Traveler
and Philanthrope
(Location Unknown)