CourtSide: Sentencing Archives
CourtSide - The FindLaw Breaking Legal News Blog

Recently in Sentencing Category

Sandusky Sentenced to 30 to 60 Years in Prison for Child Sex Abuse

Jerry Sandusky, a convicted child sex abuser from Pennsylvania, was formally sentenced on Tuesday to a minimum of 30 years in prison for his abuse of several young boys during his time as assistant football coach at Penn State. During the sentencing, Judge John Cleland stated that the “dangerous” Sandusky will not be eligible for parole for 30 years and will face no more than 60 years in prison, with credit for time served.

In pleading for his innocence on the day before sentencing, Sandusy was heard in an audio recording stating “[T]hey could take away my life, they could make me out as a monster, they could treat me as a monster, but they can’t take away my heart. In my heart, I know I did not do these alleged disgusting acts.”

While this ruling ends the high-profile, often emotional trial that chronicled the abuse of 10 boys over a 15-year period, Sandusky’s lawyers say that he claims his innocence and plans to appeal.

Currently 68, Sandusky is likely to die in prison, according to court documents.

Brooklyn Man Convicted of Beating His Puppy to Death

Dudley Ramsay (right), a 25-year-old Brooklyn man was convicted by a New York City jury today for beating his five-month-old dachshund puppy 'Junior' to death.

According to charges and evidence presented by the Brooklyn District Attorney at trial before Judge Gary, the 260-pound Ramsay severely beat the puppy, later claiming that he was trying to discipline it.

Testimony at trial by an officer from the ASPCA's Humane Law Enforement agency testified that Ramsay told the officer, "I think I need help with anger management because I killed my first dog too."

How did Ramsay he beat the young puppy? According to evidence presented at trial, with repeated violence that included:

Bernard Kerik, ex-NYPD Top Cop, Faces Sentencing Thursday

Bernard 'Bernie' Kerik, the disgraced former NYPD Police Commissioner convicted of eight felonies including lying to New York City and federal investigators about his association with a company and its figureheads who were being investigated for ties to organized crime, is going to jail.

On Thursday, February 18, 2010, Kerik faces between 27 and 33 months in federal prison, a sentencing guideline recommendation stemming from his Nov. 5, 2009 plea agreement with federal prosecutors.

Not surprisingly, there is a stark contrast between the government's sentencing memo which slams Kerik for believing that he was above the law, and the pre-sentencing memo submitted by Kerik's lawyers depicting his troubled early childhood with "his mother's prostitution and alcoholism," and his "enormous debt and mounting legal fees" that he has brought upon his current wife and the couple's two children.

Erin Andrews' Accused Stalker's Criminal Charges

Michael David Barrett, the accused stalker and criminal voyeur of ESPN reporter Erin Andrews will be arraigned in federal court on Monday, November 23, 2009.

The latest in a series of sordid charges against the 48-year-old Chicago-area Combined Insurance employee suggests that the nude videos Barrett secretly record of Andrews in hotel rooms where not simply a one-time occurrence,

Rather, it now appears that Barrett relentlessly stalked Andrews for more than a year.

Barzee Pleads Guilty in Elizabeth Smart Kidnapping Case

Wanda Barzee, a co-defendant in the Elizabeth Smart kidnapping case, pleaded guilty to several criminal charges in federal court today in exchange for a reduced prison sentence recommendation and her cooperation with prosecutors in the kidnapping, sexual assault, and violence case when Smart was 14-years-old.

Instead of life in prison, Barzee will receive a 15-year (180-month) federal prison sentence, and plead guilty to Utah state kidnapping charges.

Here is what Barzee admitted to in U.S. District Court:

Today at the Supreme Court

The Supreme Court is hearing arguments on two cases related to criminal prosecutions today.  The first, Pottawattamie County v. McGhee, examines whether prosecutors are subject to a civil trial and potential damages for wrongful conviction and incarceration when the criminal defendant alleges that the prosecutor encouraged a witness to lie during the criminal investigation and then presented that testimony during the criminal trial.

The Court's other argument today, Wood v. Allen, deals with several questions that have arisen during a capital punishment case.  Most of the questions concern the ways that the courts and attorneys handled the defendant's mental impairments, but there's also a Batson jury/evidence question thrown in for good measure.

According to Chris Brown's probation report (see below) revealed in court at his criminal sentencing yesterday, the R&B figure had a history of domestic violence incidents with his former girlfriend Rihanna, even before he pummeled and threatened to kill her while driving a rented Lamborghini in residential area of Los Angeles while on their way to the Grammy Awards in February this year.

Judge Patricia Schnegg sentenced Brown yesterday to five years of probation after he pleaded guilty to one count of felony assault in June, fewer felony charges than those that were originally filed against him by the Los Angeles District Attorney's Office.

Chris Brown's Sentencing in Rihanna Assault Case Delayed

L.A. Superior Court Judge Patricia Schnegg, who presides over the Chris Brown assault-on-Rihanna case, postponed his sentencing today until August 27.

"The judge wants to know if Virginia has similar work programs like Caltrans where he will do community labor," according to Jane Robison, a press secretary in the Los Angeles District Attorney's Office.

Donald Etra, Rihanna's attorney, said that "the judge is awaiting confirmation from Virginia as to what Chris would be doing."

But why will Chris Brown serve his sentence in Virginia instead of California?

Michael Vick Finishes Serving Federal Dogfighting Sentence

Michael Vick, the disgraced Atlanta Falcon's former starting quarterback, completed the terms of his federal sentence on dogfighting charges, appearing in federal court briefly with his attorney Lawrence Goodman to complete probation-related paperwork.

It remains unclear whther Vick will actually return to the N.F.L., however.

Weekend at Bernie Madoff's Prison? Read This First

It's a beautiful day in convicted Ponzi schemer Bernard Madoff's new neighborhood.  The disgraced former investment manager is serving his 150-year prison sentence at the Butner Federal Correction Complex in Butner, North Carolina.

Here is a sampling of Bernie's new neighbors, and the answers to frequently asked questions about conjugal visits, gifts, and more.