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Justices uphold sentence for kidnapping jail officer

July 26, 2012

In a four-page per curiam decision, the Indiana Supreme Court reinstated the trial court’s 47-year sentence of Roger Bushhorn, who pleaded guilty to charges stemming from his escape, kidnapping and assault of jail officials.

Bushhorn coordinated the escape attempt with two inmates. The men created “shanks” to use. Bushhorn and the two men rushed jail officer Vicki Day, handcuffed her and took her chemical agent container. One of the inmates stabbed Day. Bushhorn sprayed chemical agent at two responding jail officers, and the three inmates handcuffed them. Shortly thereafter, the three men were apprehended.

Bushhorn pleaded guilty to kidnapping Day, confining the other two officers, and attempted escape. He was sentenced to 47 years with three years suspended. The Court of Appeals revised his sentence, believing Bushhorn met his burden of establishing that the sentence was inappropriate. It revised to 35 years.

But the justices believed the trial court sentence was not inappropriate under Appellate Rule 7(B) and there was no abuse of discretion. They summarily affirmed the Court of Appeals in all other respects.

Justice Sullivan voted to deny transfer to the case.

 

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