Mimesis Law
19 August 2019

Death Comes for the Forgotten

Nov. 4, 2015 (Mimesis Law) — Death Comes for the Archbishop is a 1927 novel by the Nebraska author Willa Cather. It is on all the lists, such as 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century. Strange, that’s what I thought of today when I received the letter from the Bureau of Prison about Jeff.

Jeff died on October 29, 2015 at the Federal Medical Center in North Carolina. The cause of death was Stage IV Squamous Cell Carcinoma. He was 59 years old or so when he left this earth.

Thirteen years ago I sentenced Jeff to life in prison. Because he was a career offender, and because the amount of dope involved was large, the statutory minimum sentence was life. Frankly, I didn’t blink when I imposed the sentence. Indeed, I didn’t even remember Jeff when I learned of his death. I had to look him up on CM/ECF.

For Jeff, death came to the forgotten.

Richard G. Kopf
Senior United States District Judge (Nebraska)

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