Lying to get your kids in the school of your choice doesnt show any intent to commit a crime.

Ok this just fries me, it's sad, very sad.

A mother of three who was accused of illegally sending her children to school in Marietta was found not guilty Friday on felony charges.

Prosecutors claimed that Jeanine Echols, who lives in Cobb County, lied repeatedly to the government about her address because she wanted her children to attend better schools in the Marietta school district. Instead of using the address where she and her children live, Echols used the address of her husband's family.

I guess this means that you can live in a county where you pay much lesser taxes and send your kid to a school in one where the tax rate is much higher and reap the benefits of the people in the more costly county who have worked harder to make something of themselves, as long as you don't intend to commit a crime.

Intent never should have entered into this. She knew she was lying, what a great role model.

Instead of sucking it up and being a outstanding citizen and working her backside off to be able to afford to live where she wanted to send her kids to school, she cheated, she lied, she stole. She gave her kids the equivalent of an stolen education, stolen from the taxpayers in another area.

My kid is important, I sucked it up and behaved like an upstanding citizen. I moved to a county with great schools. Do I pay for it, yes, my property taxes aren't cheap and I have a 80 mile daily commute now. It cuts into my time with my family, and the money I have that I could use to find fun things for us to do, but it's the price of being an upstanding citizen who is responsible for my own life and those in it.

Its ok, I am sure when this woman needs clothes for her kids and steals them from Sears nobody will mind as long as she didn't intend to commit a crime, just do something nice for her kids. Of course if she steals from Nordstrom then is she just being greedy?

Or is she entitled to the $75 pair of jeans too?

Then was insisting on lying to send her kids to a 'better' school being greedy? What right does she have to take up space for other kids who live in the area? Are her kids that special? Academic giants? Who was she to decide that she was better than anyone else or more entitled to the benefits someone else paid for!

In the end she stole. Period. Thats ok though because in this country we live in a welfare state where its ok to suck your neighbor dry because you're too lazy to do what it takes to live like you'd like. It's ok to have 12 kids and rely on taxpayer funded medical. After all why should you pay for it right? It's ok to demand that you get your money for sitting on your butt while those around you work their asses off paying for their entire family and yours too.

Intent? It wasn't about intent. It was about choice.

She choose to defraud the school district, she choose to defraud the taxpayers, she choose to force someone else to pay her kids way because she thought they deserved better. Unfortunately for myself and others we are bound by the law and cannot choose to withhold tax money taken from us from thieves like her. We are bound by the law.

Doesn't making a choice, a conscious decision to fill out a piece of paper in a certain manner dictate intent? Or can you do it in your sleep? Even then though if it has the words you choose to put on that paper doesnt that show that you intended to fill it out that way?

Comments

Clearly you are a person that sees things in black and white, there's only a right and a wrong.

I don't know Mrs. Echols, however I know somebody that does. I came across your comments in an attempt to obtain additional information on the case. I was mortified when I read your very honest, but misguided comments. I was compelled to respond.

I must say that I'm perplexed that because you pay higher taxes you feel entitled to a better public education than someone that lives in another district separated by an imaginary border called a county line. You go further to insinuate that if people worked harder in life and weren’t lazy, they would have a better education. If Mrs. Echols’ belonged in this category do you really think she would have cared about what school her children attended? Sounds like a mother wanting better for her children, not laziness.

I bet you really believe that you are totally responsible for your plot in life and that there were no other factors that aided in your good fortune…. Doubtful. As unfortunate as I find it, I know that many people feel the way you do. I don’t doubt that you worked hard, but if you examined your life more closely you may also find that you had some help along the way. Your theory is full of holes, too many to address in this response.

I live in a very large county in Florida and being in the same county does not necessarily afford you the same level of education. I, like you, are fortunate enough that I can afford to live in an area that has more desirable schools, but in no way do I feel my kids are entitled to a better PUBLIC education than those living in a different zip code...we have private schools for that purpose. There are many people in this county, and others, that are dishonest about their mailing address so that their kids can go to the better schools. I’m not condoning their actions, but I understand. The people that live in apartments don’t pay property tax…I dare they send their children to my A+ rated neighborhood school. They have some nerve! Instead of questioning this mother’s integrity, why not question the disparity in public education. Not black and white, clearly shades of gray.

Based on your comments I can tell you have a lot of issues that reach far beyond this topic. Let’s face it, people like you are perfectly ok with the disparities in public education, because without them you won’t feel superior. Fortunately the jurors in Mrs. Echols case saw the bigger picture. Perhaps one day you will too. BTW, I would love to see your 1040…I bet it is 100% accurate…yeah right!

Well thats quite a lengthy comment so let me address your points.

Yes I see things very black and white. It's the good ol K.I.S.S. acronym. Its quite a simple situation.

Fact, your property taxes pay for services in YOUR county. While this may not be the only source of income for a school it is one of the primary ones. So she was basically getting a free ride in that county. Thats very simple. Here is why I find this so objectionable. Lets take it out of box for a minute;

In county A Betty pays $599/year in property taxes for her home and land valued at $150,000

In county B Wilma pays $1200/year in property taxes for her home and land valued at $150,000

Where did the $599 figure and the $1200 figure come from? Why the county tax assessor of course. Whats their job? Well part of their job is to decide how much they have to charge each person in their county in taxes in order for the county to provide the services that they are obligated to provide. Why is Betty paying so little? Lets say she lives in a rural area with smaller schools and less infrastructure needed.

Now lets say that in county B they manage to attract a most excellent teacher looking to get away from big city life, they want to live in the burbs. Word gets out. Suddenly there is an influx of parents looking for the best education for their kids. Lets say that 10 kids manage to get snuck into this school in the manner Mrs. Echols did by lying as to their residency. Thats $6010 a year that the county is getting screwed out of and they still have to provide the services. So costs go up and revenue stays flat. So now next year since the costs have gone up what do you have to do, why charge the honest hard working citizens of county B more money to cover the increased costs.

To me thats theft, without a doubt. Those 10 kids parents stole from the good people of county B. Good intentions are grand but its still not legal to play Robin Hood. Now for the remainder of that budgetary year that school has to deal with a budget shortfall.

To address your next comment about responsibility. Yes 100%, but you choose a different term than I. I am responsible for my actions and creating the goodwill that has caused positive things to happen. I am proof that you're life is what you make of it. I wont get into it here, but suffice it to say rock bottom in my life was as low as just about any can experience. I've been on the streets and worked my way to where I am today. Have there been lucky breaks, sure, but there have been far more setbacks or lack of lucky breaks. In those cases the difference is I never gave up and laid down to play the victim, nor did I rob a bank because I deserved something better then the Wall Street millionaire brigade. I did what was needed to continue to reach my goal and I never lose sight of that.

As for your points regarding better education. It is my opinion that you work for and earn your location. I work hard, did research and found where I could live that woul be best for my family, like I said before I pay for it both in cash, sweat, and my time. I weighed the choices and did what was best for my family and I don't regret it. The county I am in is very large and very rural. Schools are great but due to construction boom we are nearing capacity. If anyone snakes their out of county kid into one of the local schools it places an unfair burden on every tax payer in the county.

As for the disparity in public education, thats utter garbage. If education sucks in a county, then your job as a parent in that county is to get the board of education to hire better teachers. If they hire garbage you're not getting what you paid for complain long and loud. Its your money. Superior, no, want what I pay for, yes. I didnt pay property taxes to welfare in someones kids who dont provide any befit to the county from which they leech.

It brings to mind a Chinese proverb;
Teachers open the door..

You enter by yourself.

Meaning that what you do is more important that what the teacher does. Your teacher is but the doorman yuou can go in and site or you can go in and devour the experience and choose to take your hunger beyond the walls of the classroom.

As for apartment dwellers, they do pay property taxes in the form of a portion of their rent in order for the property owner to meet their taxes, they (renters) can even apply for a tax credit from the IRS.

I do have an issue, with those who not only think they deserve a free ride but those who steal it. I pay a huge amount every year so folks who cant afford what they want can have what they want. Its all a part of taxes.

As for my 1040, there isn't hardly anything to mine. My taxes are quite simple and could be easily handled by anyone.

Ok my 2 cents here!

First if she wanted her kids to go to that school why didn't she just sign over guardianship over to another family member? that way it would have been legal! Nope it a case of another parent showing there child rules don't apply to them.

( and you wonder why kids act the way they do. ) she did wrong. the good news is she will go back to the school her kids should have been in to start with. Sad for the kids yes. but they get to thank mommy for that one.

Most people do not look at the world in pretty rose colored glasses. Right and wrong is all alot of people see. In Ga you know places to live for better school. NO one wishes to move to the slums and there kids go to school where the Teachers fear going to teach. this is we parents go to the school board and DEMAND the schools to get cleaned up and pull up scores.

and if that fails we do have the GA no child left behind act. i would say before you post read it. it states that if the school is doing poor you as a parent have the right to MOVE your child to a NON failing school. again another legal way of doing things.

I am not a not a rose colored glasses type person either. Nor did i wish to see this woman get 10 years for trying to help her child/ern. BUT look at the damage her lies have done. i think she got a good punsihment.

She will for ever be a liar! she has most likely hurt her child/ern school years. and she had to take time out of her life and kids life to stand trial. yeap i think she got plent of punishment.

So the story should be every day. Think before you ACT. after all once you have kids who do you think they learn from?
if your a cheat and a liar,rule breaker,con.... What do you think your kids will be or seeing.