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Thursday, January 28, 2010

Ind. Decisions - "Corcoran will face a full resentencing"

Updating yesterday's ILB entry on the 7th Circuit's decision in the case of Joseph E. Corcoran v. Levenhagen,
Rebecca S. Green of the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette reports today in a story that begins:

After a U.S. Supreme Court ruling in the death penalty case of convicted murderer Joseph Corcoran in October, a federal appellate court Wednesday ordered he get a new sentencing hearing.

But even after a new sentence, which still could include the death penalty, the case could continue through the appeals process.

Wednesday’s ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals 7th Circuit in Chicago ordered a new sentencing hearing to correct “errors” it found in the original sentencing order. First, an Allen Superior Court judge must not consider certain circumstances to be counted against Corcoran – his future dangerousness, his victims’ innocence and the murders’ heinousness.

And, the trial court must consider his age at the time, 22, as something in Corcoran’s favor. According to the transcript of the 1999 sentencing hearing, Allen Superior Court Judge Fran Gull mentioned Corcoran’s age and declined to consider it in his favor.

The new ruling is the latest handed down by the federal appellate court. In December 2008, the appellate court reinstated the death penalty against Corcoran in a 2-1 ruling overturning the decision of a northern Indiana U.S. District Court judge, the late Allen Sharp.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on January 28, 2010 08:29 AM
Posted to Ind. (7th Cir.) Decisions