Judge Baugh Cancels Re-Sentencing Hearing - KULR-8 Television, Billings, MT

Judge Baugh Cancels Re-Sentencing Hearing

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BILLINGS -

Judge Baugh canceled the re-sentencing hearing in the Stacey Rambold case. The Judge's decision came after Attorney General Tim Fox filed an emergency petition requesting the court stop the hearing.

Judge G. Todd Baugh sentenced Rambold, the former Senior High School teacher who admitted having sexual contact with a 14-year-old student, to 31 days in prison for breaking terms of his plea agreement. After reviewing Montana code, Judge Baugh says the minimum amount of jail time is actually two years, not 31 days, which he says may have been an illegal sentence.

"That issue could have been avoided all together if I'd been more alert or if the state had pointed out to the court the correct mandatory minimum," said Judge Baugh.

According to Montana code, the only way to correct the error is through an appeal with the state, which was filed Wednesday.

"Thank goodness that the Attorney General stepped in and said this can't happen like this," said Auliea Hanlon, the victim's mother.

Judge Baugh wanted to continue, regardless of the state's request to suspend the hearing. But the Judge says he decided to cancel the hearing Thursday night, even before the Montana Supreme Court also ordered the hearing to be canceled.

"The only judgment that I thought I could issue in good conscience was one that said 15 years with all but two years suspended," said Baugh.

The intervention of the State is something the victim's mother is unsure about.

"I was torn this morning as to whether I wanted this to happen or not. I mean, it would be great if it was done finally. But two years, I don't, I don't think that quite cuts it," said Hanlon.

For Hanlon, it's been a long journey and she just wants vindication for her daughter who never leaves her mind.

"Everyday. This was hers and I love her. And you know, vindication. She was right, she wasn't lying. See! He is a creep," said Hanlon.

The State will move forward with the appeal and will address the legality of the imposed sentence in the appeal.

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