The Indiana Supreme Court found that an enhanced sentence for a man convicted of nine counts of molesting his girlfriend’s young daughter is warranted, but reduced the man’s 324-year sentence to 110 years.
In the 5-page unanimous opinion in Randy Horton v. State of Indiana, No. 48S04-1106-CR-386, the justices summarily affirmed the Indiana Court of Appeals decision to uphold Randy Horton’s convictions of six counts of Class A felony child molesting and three counts as Class C felonies. The convictions stem from his repeated abuse of his girlfriend’s 7-year-old daughter while her mother slept. The abuse damaged her bowels and led to her contracting two types of herpes.
The high court took Horton’s case to address his sentencing claims. Horton was sentenced to the maximum of 50 years on the Class A felony counts and eight years on the Class C felony counts, which were imposed consecutively.
“Like the prosecutor, the trial court judge, and the judges on the Court of Appeals, our heart goes out to the innocent child who was a victim of Horton’s crimes,” wrote Justice Frank Sullivan.
The justices agreed that Horton’s sentence should be enhanced above the advisory level because of the abuse of trust caused by the molestations, as well as the frequency of the acts. They also cited that he should receive credit for his lack of adult criminal history.
Citing Cardwell v. State, 895 N.E.2d 1219 (Ind. 2008), the justices reduced his sentence to a total of 110 years. They supported the enhancement of one Class A felony conviction to 50 years, but revised his remaining Class A felonies to the 30-year advisory term. The Class C felonies were also reduced to their advisory term of four years. The sentences on three of the Class A felonies will be served consecutively to make the 110-year sentence, with the rest of the sentences being served concurrently.
The justices ordered the trial court to issue an amended sentencing order and issue or make any other documents or docket entries necessary to impose a revised sentence consistent with the opinion.