Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Mardi Gras killer is sentenced again

Five years after Seattle's "Mardi Gras riot," Jerell Thomas, a young man who was convicted of killing another young man during the melee, was resentenced by Judge Theresa Doyle. The Seattle Times: Local News: Mardi Gras killer is sentenced again

Resentencing was necessary because Thomas was convicted of felony murder. Since then, the Washington Supreme Court ruled that assault cannot be a predicate crime for second degree felony murder. Personal Restraint Petition of Andress, 147 Wash. 2d 602, 56 P.3d 981 (2002), legalwa.org, Westlaw. Following that precedent, Division 1 vacated the felony murder conviction and remanded for further proceedings. State v. Thomas, 127 Wash. App. 1004, 2005 WL 984781 (April 25, 2005), Westlaw (unpublished decision).

In 2001, Thomas was sentenced to 15 years. Yesterday, after he pleaded guilty to second-degree manslaughter, Judge Doyle sentence him to 10 years, the maximum allowed.

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