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Re: Mindich "legal woes"

On 24 Nov 2002 at 19:19, Donna Halper wrote:

> Meanwhile, I agree
> the sentence Judge Lopez gave out was outrageous, but come one-- every
> day, rapists are given light sentences, wife beaters are sent home (and in
> one well-publicised case, the male judge suggested to the wife to be nicer
> to her husband and then he wouldn't have to hit her... and no I am not
> making this up... oh, and I don't recall a similar outcry from the Herald
> a few years back when that very politically-connected judge made that
> statement... but, to the Herald's credit, a few months ago when a judge
> basically blamed a young victim for being raped, the Herald did howl
> mightily about it...), drunk drivers who kill somebody with their car are
> let off with a slap on the wrist--- so let's not single out Judge Lopez. 
> Let's examine sentencing patterns in general and then we can see if her
> actions were so far out of line compared to her colleagues on the bench. 

The real problem is that these sentences are all perfectly legal.  In the Federal system, there 
is a formula with a presumptive sentence, and the judge who departs up or down from the 
presumptive sentence must file a written memorandum of reasons.  Legislation to reform 
sentencing in Massachusetts has languished in the Legislature for several years.

A. Joseph Ross, J.D.                           617.367.0468
 15 Court Square, Suite 210                 lawyer@attorneyross.com
Boston, MA 02108-2503           	         http://www.attorneyross.com