Have we become soft on crime? Does it feel like we are unable to reform the criminals? If you are unsure about the answer then consider the story of Lavere Bryant.
- In 1999, he broke into a woman’s home and sexually assaulted her. He served a year in prison.
- In 2001, he picked up a prostitute and stabbed her. He served ten years in prison.
- He never complied with the new sex offender registry.
- Now in 2013, he is being charged with killing two Family Dollar store workers.
These are the two Family Dollar store victims, Joe Orlando and Brenna Machus.
I feel that this story is relevant because Obama’s Justice Department claims screening employees based on background checks are racial discrimination.
On the same day the Family Dollar store in Dearborn reopened where 20-year-olds Joe Orlando and Brenna Machus worked, a former employee was charged with their murders.
Police said the night of July 16, 34-year-old Lavere Bryant shot and killed Orlando in the bathroom, robbed the store and abducted Machus. He eventually shot her, too, and dumped her body in a field less than a mile away.
Jamie Machus said he recognized his daughter’s alleged killer in court.
"I saw him and never thought anything else about it. He just worked there," he said.
Family Dollar confirmed Bryant was fired last spring, but would not say why or explain how a man with a lengthy rap sheet was hired in the first place.
"Honestly, I think that’s why Family Dollar paid for the funeral. The same reason they had only one video camera instead of all six of them working, they knew they were wrong," Jamie Machus said.
Fox 2 has learned the convicted sex offender never complied with the new registry laws requiring him to verify his address. Police held him on that until they completed their murder investigation.
On Wednesday in a courtroom packed with police and the families of both victims, Bryant was charged with two counts of first-degree murder, armed robbery and unlawful imprisonment. He is being held without bond.
Bryant is scheduled to be back on court on July 31.