In a recent criminal law matter, the Sentencing Review Division (Division) of the Superior Court of Connecticut declined to reduce the sentence of a petitioner because the sentence was not inappropriate or disproportionate.
This case arose from an incident that occurred on June 27, 2007. The victim was arriving at her home when she saw the petitioner, who she did not know, run out of her house and promptly drive away. Police located the petitioner, but he would not stop and led them on a high-speed chase before escaping. However, he was tracked down and arrested the next day.
The petitioner was charged and convicted, following a jury trial, of the following counts:
- Burglary (Third Degree): maximum of five years of incarceration. If Persistent Serious Felony Offender, then maximum of ten years of incarceration.
- Criminal Mischief (Third Degree): maximum of six months in jail.
- Engaging Police in Pursuit: maximum one year in jail.
- Evading Responsibility: minimum of one year in jail, maximum of five years of incarceration.
- Reckless Driving: maximum of thirty days in jail.
Because of his lengthy criminal record and lack of remorse or acceptance of responsibility, the petitioner was sentenced to a total of twelve years of incarceration. He sought a reduced sentence, arguing that he should “not be penalized for exercising his right to a jury trial” and that he deserved a credit for admitting to being a Persistent Serious Felony Offender.
The Division is very limited statutorily in their modification authority to sentences that are “inappropriate” or “disproportionate.” Upon review of this case, the Division believed that the trial court imposed a proper sentence, and noted that there was nothing in the record indicating the petitioner was penalized for going to trial. Rather, “[t]he sentence imposed is fully merited, appropriate and proportionate.” Therefore, the sentence was affirmed.
When faced with a charge of evading responsibility, an individual is best served by consulting with an experienced criminal law practitioner. Should you have any questions regarding criminal defense, please do not hesitate to contact Attorney Joseph C. Maya in the firm’s Westport office in Fairfield County at 203-221-3100 or at JMaya@Mayalaw.com.
Written by Lindsay E. Raber, Esq.