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September 28, 2011

Defendant sentenced by judge gone bad gets no resentencing relief

As reported in this new Atlanta Journal-Constitution article, a "federal judge on Tuesday emphatically rejected a request by an inmate for a steep sentence reduction on claims he may have been the victim of racial bias from former Judge Jack Camp, who resigned in disgrace because of crimes he committed with a stripper."  Here are the basics:

"Judge Camp did a lot of bad things and he's paying the price," U.S. District Judge Timothy Batten told Mark Anthony McBride.  "But it sure doesn't appear to me this sentence in any way was based on racial animus."

Batten then unloaded on McBride for his crimes, saying he had destroyed lives and orchestrated some of the fraud while living in a halfway house after being released from prison on a previous fraud conviction.

"I think you're a liar, and I think you're a crook," Batten told McBride, who sat at the defense table.  As for the breadth of McBride's fraud, Batten said, "It fits in the category of ‘You've got to be kidding me.' "

Batten said if he, not Camp, had initially been assigned McBride's case he would have given him an additional 40 months behind bars -- the maximum recommended by the federal sentencing guidelines....

As for Camp, at the time he handed down his sentence, Batten said: "I have no idea what was going through his mind. I can't believe he gave you 170 months for this.  It's just unbelievable to me."  Batten then resentenced McBride, 45, of East Point, to the same prison time that Camp gave him, saying he thought it would have been "unfair, but not unjust," to impose a harsher sentence.

September 28, 2011 at 08:41 AM | Permalink

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