Posting the sane and insane news about the law and what otherwise strikes my fancy.
The opinions and commentary made by this author is solely his own. It does not reflect the opinion of any other individual or organization including the 83rd District Attorney's Office or Pecos, Brewster, Presidio or Jeff Davis Counties.
Friday, January 25, 2008
She who laughs last
I am trying to understand why the Judge still shaved one year off of the maximum sentence she could have received.
Laughing jailhouse phone call gets woman tough sentence Arrington's attorney says she really is remorseful about bicyclist's death
TUCSON, Arizona (AP) -- A judge sentenced a woman to nearly the maximum prison term for negligent homicide after hearing a recorded jail conversation in which she made light of the bicyclist she killed.
Melissa Arrington, 27, was convicted two months ago of negligent homicide and two counts of aggravated DUI in connection with the December 2006 death of Paul L'Ecuyer.
She could have gotten as few as four years behind bars, but Superior Court Judge Michael Cruikshank sentenced her Tuesday to 10½ years -- one year shy of the maximum. Cruikshank said he found a telephone conversation between Arrington and an unknown male friend, a week after L'Ecuyer was killed, to be "breathtaking in its inhumanity."
During the conversation, the man told Arrington that an acquaintance believed she should get a medal and a parade because she had "taken out" a "tree hugger, a bicyclist, a Frenchman and a gay guy all in one shot."
Arrington laughed. When the man said he knew it was a terrible thing to say, she responded, "No, it's not."
Assistant Public Defender Michael Rosenbluth told the judge his client has never been "cold, callous or flippant" about L'Ecuyer's death and has always felt remorseful.
Arrington said words couldn't express how she feels, and that once she's out of prison, she hopes to share her story with Mothers Against Drunk Driving.
L'Ecuyer, 45, was riding his bike the night of December 1, 2006 when Arrington swerved off the road, hit him and then continued for 800 feet before stopping, according to Deputy Pima County Attorney Jonathan Mosher.
Arrington's blood-alcohol content was .156 percent, nearly double Arizona's .08 legal limit. She had been driving on a suspended license for a prior DUI.