Saturday, February 04, 2012

Victor VanOrden gets 5 years for Guilty Plea

ELP Information Bulletin (3rd Feb 2012)

Dear friends,

The following information appears on the Support Kellie and Victor website. If anyone has an address for Victor please contact ELP as soon as possible. Thursday, February 2, 2012

Victor sentenced to 5 years in prison. Kellie decides to plead not guilty and go to trial.

Today, District Judge Duane Hoffmeyer sentenced Victor to 5 years in prison after he pleaded guilty in Woodbury County District Court to releasing an animal from an animal facility and attempted third-degree burglary. In addition to the 5 year prison sentence, Judge Hoffmeyer ordered Victor to pay $8,757 in restitution to Steve Krage, the mink farm's owner.

Victor had agreed to plead guilty as part of a plea agreement, but the odd thing is that no sentence had been spelled out prior to this morning. The ultimate decision of the length of the sentence was left up to Judge Hoffmeyer. Originally, Victor's lawyer felt that this was a
better direction to take instead of trial in which Victor would have been facing a maximum sentence of 13 years and could have been sentenced to the full duration of that time if found guilty by the jury.

The Judge told the court room that the decision was difficult because Victor is so young and has a clean slate (no prior criminal record).

The Judge Hoffmeyer was rather tough today in his deliberation stating, "In the length it takes to drive up here, you had numerous opportunities to ask yourself, 'What are we doing?' ...
and you still kept on coming."

Judge Hoffmeyer said he would be open to reconsidering his sentencing order at some point.
"That's certainly on the table," he said.

It was reported by the Sioux City Journal that Kellie, Victor's wife, was sitting in the gallery behind her husband, and Kellie gasped when Judge Hoffmeyer announced his sentence.

Kellie was also scheduled to be sentenced today at 1:00 pm in which she was planning on pleading guilty, but after a short conversation with her attorney, her lawyer asked to speak with
Judge Hoffmeyer and Assistant Woodbury County Attorney Drew Bockenstedt in the judge's chambers. When they returned to the courtroom, Judge Hoffmeyer opened the hearing and said he understood that Marshall did not wish to plead guilty.

Kellie is scheduled for trial March 6th 2012. Donations for legal fees are now needed more than ever!

++++++ Earth Liberation Prisoners
BM Box 2407LondonWC1N 3XX England

No comments: