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3 Responses to “Daily Commentary – Tuesday January 16th, 2007 – Miracles and Missing Persons”
Michael Devlin,the suspected kidnapper of Shawn Hornbeck and William Ben Owensby, is not a convicted child molestor (at least not yet). The night the boys were rescued, some media sources wrongly identified Devlin as a sex offender from Utah, but that was quickly corrected (it was a name match only). This particular Michael Devlin has no criminal history, and only has a couple of traffic offences on his record.
Ahh good catch monkey girl
The fact that Devlin has no criminal background on record, in my opinion, does not diminish the threat he poses to children and, unfortunately, will be used by his attorneys as an argument for leniency to mitigate his punishment.
I expect young Ben will testify against Devlin in the kidnapping charge he now faces in Franklin County, but the absence of substantial injury is another mitigating factor his attorneys will use as an argument for less than the maximum penalty when Devlin is sentenced. And you can be damn sure that Devlin’s attorneys will have a parade of psychiatric professionals lined up at Devlin’s presentence hearing to allege that he is a victim of some sort of mental illness and argue for leniency and psychotherapy to avoid the maximum penalty.
I think only Shawn’s testimony against Devlin can change the dynamics of the penalty Devlin gets and I fear Shawn may refuse to testify against him. If that happens, the Washington County prosecutor will also have difficulty getting the maximum penalty in the Washington County abduction trial. Without Shawn’s testimony against Devlin, I think the most that the Washington County prosecutor can hope to do is get a penalty less than maximum but one that is imposed to run consecutively and not merged into the time he serves on the Franklin County sentence. And the Washington County prosecutor, without Shawn’s testimony against Devlin, might even decide to settle for a plea bargain.
All that said, though I believe Devlin is a scumbag who is a huge threat to children, I fear there is potential that liberal courts will impose far less than maximum penalty for his crimes.
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