Letter from prison


Two things: First, he didn't actually kill anyone. He was convicted of the same crime as the person he was with because of bullshit, overarching prosecutorial power and a populace that wants a head for an eye at the cost of leaving the world without brains. But now City Pages is towing the radical line by calling someone who didn't kill anyone, let alone a cop, a cop killer because he was convicted of killing a cop. Just because the law (and a bunch of illiterate convicts) say it's so doesn't mean that it is. The law has no interest in the truth, whereas a newspaper should, and this headline is patently false.

Second, he shouldn't bother worrying about what job he's going to get in 35 years. Life expectancy in maximum security prisons is way less than that. He'll probably die of TB and pneumonia by 40. And the prosecution knows that this is an effective death sentence; it's not technically, because there's just that small glimmer of hope, hope that maybe—just maybe—one day he'll get to hug his kids again. Good luck with that.


He may not have done the crime that he is imprisoned for, but what about the rest of the ones he did do—is he really guilty or not? What if it were your child or stepchild? Would you still feel the same? Was it really his father's fault or stepfather's fault? Seems he was there, not them.

A Person

Boo frickin' hoo. Oh, I struggled with addiction. Oh, life was hard. We're leaving town, let's carjack someone who works for a living instead of doing dope, then compound our problems by killing someone. I hope your next 35 years suck.


I can't see any negatives to removing this guy from society. He's a scumbag who never contributed anything positive to the community. Good riddance.


What color is the sky in your world, kw? I'm hoping when and if he gets out that maybe he sticks up one of your relatives in a botched robbery. Maybe you'll think twice about what "recidivism" is and what that means in this society. You clearly have no idea about anything about the criminal justice system and couldn't care less.


Die in jail mother f'er.

st paul cop resident

Hey kw, the only kid hugs this scum is going to get is by his new boyfriends in his new jail house. Hope you like men, you puke.


Stamper: I can tell that yours is a very deeply held, well thought-out argument. But, with several years in criminal justice experience, I can also tell you that you need to read a motherfucking book about your precious motherfucking criminal justice system that wasn't written by one of your troglodyte ideologues on cable news or some bigoted 400-pound redneck from the Florida swamps. Course, you probably can't read too good. That was mean of me.


Kw, it seems to me that you are the only voice of reason in these posted comments. While I don't condone Martin's general lifestyle choices, I agree that he didn't actually kill anyone. Thirty-five years and the title of "Cop Killer" for the murder of whom, exactly? He deserves jail time, certainly, but not for murder.


I have met Josh and I know his mother. This is a tragedy for all parties concerned, whatever the whole truth of the situation is. We know Josh did not shoot anyone, and whatever he pleaded to I will never be 100 percent convinced that he even knew Jason was going to shoot the officer. Did he deserve prison time? Yes. Did he deserve a murder conviction? Honestly, I do not know and I do not think we ever will.

I do know he was threatened with first degree rather than second degree charges if he did not plead guilty—and first degree charges, he knew would have given him life without parole. No one was going to believe a guy with a record who had already been labeled a cop killer. If Josh is guilty of this, and of malice aforethought he deserves this and worse, but I still feel for his family, most particularly his mom and his own kids, as well as for the officer's family.

The yelling back and forth about cops and killers—who cares? A lot of lives are over here—or changed forever—along with the officer who just went to work one day to do his job and never came home. I bet Josh comes out of prison a middle-aged man, with at least a few brokenhearted people who go to an early grave over this long gone from both sides.