A career criminal was sentenced to life in prison for robbing an 8-year-old Girl Scout selling cookies with her mother outside a supermarket. "No case is a better example of the depths we, society, have sunk to," Circuit Judge Bob Mitcham said during Tuesday's sentencing.
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Stung when a prisoner on furlough was linked to the rape of a 14-year-old girl, Spokane County prosecutors no longer will consent to jail releases involving convicted felons. From now on, Prosecuting Attorney Jim Sweetser said Thursday, inmates with felony records will be viewed as "unacceptable risks, who I feel should not be on the streets."
A man who is a "career offender" will spend more than 15 years in a federal prison for selling methamphetamine within 1,000 feet of an east Spokane school. Jerry Dunn, 35, was convicted by a jury in May 1994 of two federal firearms violations, including possessing a weapon with an obliterated serial number.
Jerry Dewayne Williams - a small-time street criminal described by his girlfriend as a man with a taste for "stupid, stupid" crimes - was found guilty Friday of stealing a single slice of pepperoni pizza and now faces 25 years to life in prison under California's sweeping "three strikes" law. Word of the Superior Court verdict in suburban Torrance and the specter of a life sentence for the 27-year-old Compton warehouseman appalled critics of the law, and is certain to fuel debate between those who say the law is the get-tough stance a society of victims has long demanded and those who believe it imposes unfair punishment.