An Upper Providence, Pennsylvania, man who attacked his wife and teenage daughter with a knife has filed paperwork requesting that the courts review his prison sentence. The courts sentenced him to between 15 and 34 years in prison followed by 10 years of probation supervision for attempted murder and aggravated assault. The paperwork claims he does not pose a threat to others.
The man's attorney also expressed their view that the man is not a danger to the community. He elaborated that the man does not have a prior criminal history and previously demonstrated solid morals. The lawyer also explained that the crime was out of character for the normally responsible citizen and that the injuries the victim received were not life-threatening. The attorney opined that the sentence was overly punitive.
The district attorney feels strongly that a lengthy prison term is fully justified. The defendant pled guilty to attempted murder and aggravated assault. However, a psychiatric evaluation prior to the trial determined that he was mentally ill, which means he did not fully understand his actions. The defendant will be placed in a secure mental institution and then transferred to prison once his mental health stabilizes.
Domestic violence cases present a wide variety of dynamics. People such as the man in this case can act out of character in the heat of the moment. For someone who is going through a similar situation, an experienced defense attorney can help provide the context for a defense that could make a tangible difference when it comes to a verdict or sentencing.
Source: The Times Herald, "Upper Providence man who attacked wife with knife wants reduced sentence," Carl Hessler Jr., July 31, 2012