Sunday, November 28, 2010

Judge makes up facts and sends autistic defendant to prison

A basic sense of fairness dictates that a criminal defendant should be sentenced only for his crime of conviction.  Given this, most people would be surprised to learn that, when dispensing punishment, judges might also be able to consider “uncharged and unproven offenses,” and increase their sentences accordingly.  But this incredibly lax standard still wasn’t enough for one judge, who went even further and created facts out of thin air (and contrary to the evidence) to justify sending an autistic defendant to prison.