ILNews

Justices reinstate 80-year sentence

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Disagreeing with the Court of Appeals, which ordered a convicted child molester’s sentence cut in half, the Indiana Supreme Court reinstated John Kimbrough III’s 80-year aggregate sentence for molesting his former girlfriend’s two young daughters.

A jury convicted Kimbrough of four Class A felony and two Class C felony child molesting charges, but merged the Class C felonies into the Class A felonies. He received an 80-year sentence. A divided Court of Appeals ordered Kimbrough’s sentence revised to an aggregate term of 40 years after finding the trial court abused its discretion.

Justice Robert Rucker noted in John Kimbrough, III v. State of Indiana, 45S04-1212-CR-687, that the high court disagreed with the appellate judges for several reasons.

“First, it is certainly true that a trial court may abuse its discretion where the sentencing statement omits reasons that are clearly supported by the record and advanced for consideration,” he wrote. “But in this case the trial court’s sentencing statement did not omit consideration of Kimbrough’s lack of a criminal history.”

“Second, by describing Kimbrough’s lack of criminal history as a ‘substantial mitigating factor,’ and remanding this case with instructions to impose a reduced sentence, the Court of Appeals majority implicitly suggested the trial court should have given greater weight to this factor,” he continued.

“In summary, because the trial court correctly entered its sentencing statement in compliance with the dictates of Anglemyer and because the ‘appropriateness’ of a sentence has no bearing on whether a sentence is erroneous, the trial court did not abuse its discretion in imposing Kimbrough’s sentence. Further, Kimbrough did not seek review and revision of his sentence under Indiana Appellate Rule (7)(B).”

 

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  • Tyranny is upon us!
    If a court of appeals reduces a sentence the supreme court has no right to overule that court except to reduce the sentence even more! Courts seem to think they can rule on any matter any way they choose as it suits them irregardless of constitutional law!

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  1. Frankly, it is tragic that you are even considering going to an expensive, unaccredited "law school." It is extremely difficult to get a job with a degree from a real school. If you are going to make the investment of time, money, and tears into law school, it should not be to a place that won't actually enable you to practice law when you graduate.

  2. As a lawyer who grew up in Fort Wayne (but went to a real law school), it is not that hard to find a mentor in the legal community without your school's assistance. One does not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to go to an unaccredited legal diploma mill to get a mentor. Having a mentor means precisely nothing if you cannot get a job upon graduation, and considering that the legal job market is utterly terrible, these students from Indiana Tech are going to be adrift after graduation.

  3. 700,000 to 800,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession each year in the US. Do we need a new justice center if we decriminalize marijuana by having the City Council enact a $100 fine for marijuana possession and have the money go towards road repair?

  4. I am sorry to hear this.

  5. I tried a case in Judge Barker's court many years ago and I recall it vividly as a highlight of my career. I don't get in federal court very often but found myself back there again last Summer. We had both aged a bit but I must say she was just as I had remembered her. Authoritative, organized and yes, human ...with a good sense of humor. I also appreciated that even though we were dealing with difficult criminal cases, she treated my clients with dignity and understanding. My clients certainly respected her. Thanks for this nice article. Congratulations to Judge Barker for reaching another milestone in a remarkable career.

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