Sadly, our citizens have had to endure years of self-aggrandizing promotion on the part of this judge. Doctrines of fundamental fairness, impartiality and due process apparently have become secondary to the judge's own political agenda, unfortunately, his actions appear to play well with some voters who believe a judge is merely an arm of law enforcement tasked to punish any and all accused of criminal conduct whether or not a factual basis exists, Now, this judge seeks to minimize this indelible stain on his legacy by laying the blame for these incidents on the DA, the defendants and supposed misinterpretations of the law. Such efforts would be laughable in most situations, but the fact this man has the authority to deprive citizens of their liberty makes his obfuscations disturbing and dangerous. It signals a jurist who has an overriding contempt for the electorate, the judiciary and, equally, the law, it is the height of arrogance which belies an inherent lack of judicial temperament.
this offense carries 2-4 years, as set by the state legislature. under our sentencing guidelines, sentences under 8 years are presumed probabtable. First time offenders rarely servfe jail time in cases carrying less than 8 years. Had this clmt been convicted of this offense at trial, the sentence would have been the same. The sentence was proper and within the sentencing guidelines. your outrage should be directed against the General Assembly. they established these guidelines. This plea carried an agreed sentence. Judges presume the state knows the inherent strenghs and weaknesses of thie cases. as such, courts presum these offers reflect what the state believe the case is worth. Judges are not a party to plea negotiations. They can reject a plea offer but rarely do for the reasons discussed. This offender likely had no record. had he gone to trial for the same offense, the sentnece likely would have been the same. Thus, the judge didn't "go along" with anything. moreover,a court has little discretion in determining a sentence. it must follow the established guiidelines. the sentence hear satisfied the statute and was proper within the guidelines. the judge merely followed the law in accepting the plea. The result would have been the same had he gone to trial. The judge "went along" with nothing
It's amazing that people who were not present in the courtroom and presumably have not reviewed or heard any of the evidence actually presented at the hearing possess such foresight. You all must be clairvoyant. Even more comforting is your readiness to convict and sterilize two people presumed innocent under our state and federal consitutions. Did any of you ever take a civics class in school? That is, presuming you ever finished or even attended school- which is doubtful given the keen insight belied by your comments. Perhaps, steps should be implemented to prevent any of you from propagating, as your gene pools appear way to shallow to support intelligent forms of life. It befuddles me why our local criminal court judges are smeared constantly just for following the law. The State made a motion. The defendants had a hearing (which in and of itself probably irks you to no end.) The judge determined the State failed to meet its burden by a preponderance of the evidence. Prosecutors in another county have indicated these new charges will be dismissed. There's no there there. But, regardless, you simpletons will still get your wish, as these defendants soon will stand trial. So, it seems to me you should direct your anger at the prosecutor for failing to make a compelling enough case to have the bonds revoked or increased. I have another surprise for you. criminally negligent homicide is an E felony in TN and carries a 1-2 sentence. Under TN's sentencing code, sentences under 8 years are presumed to be probatable, absent certain aggravating factors. So,if these two are convicted and are given suspended sentences, you might want to direct your anger at the DA's office for charging such a low felony and the grand jury for returning true bills for an E felony offense. then, maybe you should start a petition to recall all of the state legislators who drafted and enacted the criminal statute that established criminally negligent homicide as an E felony. But, Judge Stern is not the one who deserves your wrath. She is tasked to follow the law and not base her rulings on mere emotion. Obviously, this time-honored American legal precept clashes with your jaded and twisted world views in which mere allegations of wrongdoing constitute irrefutable proof of guilt. How comforting it is people like all of you are enfranchised.
your last experience witht he courts was 4 decades ago? That explains a lot. You obviously aren't familiar with the 1989 sentencing reform act. you apparently never learned the limited role a judge actually plays inside the courtroom. You probabbly weren't trained on the finer intricacies between a plea agreemnent and sentencing after a trial. Again, please try to follow, a plea deal involves a pre-arranged sentence offered by the STATE, which the defendant has accepted. The judge has no role in negotiating those deals - it's kind of prohibited by law - you know, that thing you swore to uphold? - and merely accepts or declines the plea agreement recommended by the STATE. On the other hand, if a defendant is convicted after a trial, the judge then holds a sentencing hearing. Both sides get To put on evidence. the judge then must - again, unnder that pesky impediment to justice, the TENNESSEE CODE ANNOTATED - must (MUST) weigh any and all mitigating and aggravating factors addressed in the statute. Then the judge must look at the defendant's prior record and then the judge must hand down a sentence within a range of years determined for the offense that was the basis of the convtions - as prescribed under TITLE 40 of the TCA. A judge can only throw a book at the defendant within the framework of the sentencing guidelines as instituted by the Tennessee Genral Assembly - you know, jack, as our state is organized under a representative form of government. Jack, I know you think a judge is the law and we have a couple of judges in this county who think they are above the law, however, the judge actually has very limited power. We are lucky, in that we have 3 criminal court judges who actually take their jobs seriously and try to follow the law - you know, jack, upohold their oath to folloow the constitution. I'll bet judge Hinson would have explained to you the importance of following the law and meting out legal sentences under the guidelines that would be upheld on appeal. after 12 years on the force, it seems like you would have learned a little something about the courts. Your attacks on Jusdge Stern are unwarranted and I get the feeling are not based on any firsthand experience in her courtroom. I have sat in there many times and I assure you she will not hesistate in sending someone to the penitentiary. I've seen her do it - A LOT. You, apparently, are angry she deigns to follow the law. Which would make you an anarchist - or a vigilante thug. Which is it?
To Jack, Brewer and Hambone:
you really should educate yourselves about the criminal court systems in Hamilton County before you open your collective mouths and reveal your utter ignorance. The criminal Court judges generally do not set bonds. the bond was set by either a magistrate or a sessions judge, both of whom deal with these cases before they go to the grand jury. If the defendant is indicted, his case is assigned to criminal court. The defendant then appears for arraignment and he and his attorney are given a new court date. So, once the case reaches criminal court, the bond issue has long been settled, unless the state makes a motion to increase or revoke the bond. These issues must be made through motions of the parties actually involved in the litigation - it is not the judge's province to do this without a formal motion being made. So, your misguided anger at judge stern should be directed at the DA's office, as it appears they agreed to bonds in the preliminary courts and did not file motions to revoke bond until July. You might want to take a civics class sometime. As far as judge stern's perceived lenience 99% of the cases reported by the media have been plea agreements entered into between the defendant and the STATE. So, (and I'll spell this out in terms even you simpletons can understand), the DA made an offer to the defendant through his attorney to plea guilty to a certain charge in exchange for an agreed sentence. The defendant accepts the deal.The STATE then announces the deal in court. 99% of The time, judges accept plea deals negotiated between defense counsel and the STATE, because 99% of all judges assume the attorneys are more familiar with the facts in the case and are aware of the strengths and weaknesses on both sides - thus the plea. If you think sentences are too lenient, talk to THE DA. His office makes the offers. Judges don't negotiate pleas. Additionally, judges have sentencing guidelines prescribed in the Tennessee Code Annotated, which they are required to follow - or the case will be overturned on appeal. Judges just can't dole out sentences based on their emotion - that contravenEs the law. I know you guys probably base your knowledge of the law on the numerous reruns of NIGHT COURT you doubtlessly have spent several hours watching, but this is the system you are stuck with. your anger should be directed at the DA. He makes the offers. But, hey, don't let the facts get in the way of your monumental ignorance.
(P.S., judge stern recently sentenced a defendant to 40 years in a drug case. you probably missed that because you were watching LA LAW IN YOUR BASEMENT.)