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Montana prosecutors appeal ex-teacher’s rape sentence

BILLINGS – State prosecutors on Wednesday appealed as “illegal” a 30-day sentence handed down by a Montana judge to a former teacher for raping a student who later killed herself.

The announcement came after District Judge G. Todd Baugh received widespread condemnation for the sentence and his comments that the victim was “older than her chronological age.”

Baugh scheduled a resentencing hearing for defendant Stacey Rambold, 54, who last week received 15 years in prison with all but 30 days a month suspended for his monthslong sexual relationship with Billings Senior High School student Cherice Moralez.

Attorneys for the state and Yellowstone County say a minimum of two years in prison is mandated under state law.

Prosecutors on Wednesday filed notice that they want the resentencing canceled so the appeal can proceed.

Though Baugh’s bid to resentence Rambold is “well-intentioned,” Chief Deputy Yellowstone County Attorney Rod Souza wrote, the judge lacks the authority to take back his original sentence.



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