Archive for Thursday, June 2, 2011

Family asks for lesser prison sentence for man convicted of Lawrence robbery

June 2, 2011


Several family members Thursday pleaded for a Douglas County judge to be lenient with a prison sentence on a 22-year-old Topeka man who was convicted of robbing a Lawrence convenience store in 2009.

“We’re not interested in him not being accountable for his actions. I just ask that you please give him the chance, a reasonable chance, to rehabilitate and be a contributor to our society,” said Sedryck Welch’s stepfather Gregory Bailey, “because I’m committed to helping him do that.”

A jury in January convicted Welch of aggravated robbery after prosecutors accused him of using a shotgun to rob a clerk on Aug. 3, 2009, at Conoco, 2447 W. Sixth St.

Welch has already been sentenced to serve 59 months in prison after he pleaded guilty to two counts of aggravated robbery in Shawnee County related to a 2009 robbery at a Topeka convenience store.

For the Douglas County conviction, under state sentencing guidelines Welch faces anywhere from 17 to 19 years in prison, but his attorney Sarah Swain is asking District Judge Michael Malone to give him a lesser prison sentence.

Swain had psychologist who evaluated Welch in jail testify Thursday that Welch had a low IQ, a learning disability and was prone to peer pressure to try to impress others, but he said his family support boded well for him not to re-offend.

During the January trial Douglas County prosecutors presented surveillance photos of a man with a gun that night, and the clerk and two other witnesses who knew Welch in 2009 testified and said they believed he was the man in the video.

“I just don’t understand it. I wish it’d just all go away,” Welch said in court Thursday. “I do have to get punished for something that happened, and I’m the type of person who takes responsibility for actions.”

His father, Rickey Welch, who served two years in prison from 1990 to 1992 for a Shawnee County robbery asked Malone for a shorter sentence for his son.

“Don’t throw him under the bus,” Rickey Welch said. “Just like the system gave me the opportunity and that chance to redo and get my life together, give him that chance too, so he can stand up and be a man.”

After the nearly three-hour hearing Thursday, Malone rescheduled closing arguments in the sentencing for 10 a.m. June 21.


doc1 6 years, 11 months ago

HIs first mistake was to hire Sara Swain. She's the laughing stock in the attorney circle.

Steve Jacob 6 years, 11 months ago

It's hard to give someone a break when you use a shotgun in a robbery.

somebodynew 6 years, 11 months ago

“I just don’t understand it. I wish it’d just all go away,”

Well, there is part of the problem. What part of pulling a gun to commit more than one robbery don't you understand. That part that it is illegal or the part that you might have to go away for a long time?? Hopefully the only thing going away will be you.

kef104 6 years, 11 months ago

Personally, any time someone uses a gun to commit a crime they should be charged with attempted murder. The sentence should reflect that.

bigdave 6 years, 11 months ago

“Don’t throw him under the bus,” Rickey Welch said. “

I would throw him under the bus as it rolled by!!

kimk 6 years, 11 months ago

Funny how the white kid is looking at getting sentenced to 5 years for holding up the cash center in Walmart that has hundreds of people in it and setting the McDonalds on fire with numerous people in it,while the black kid holds up a store with one person and is looking at 17-19 years. I understand prior criminal history. However from my understanding Mr. Welch was charged with 1 count while Mr. Paterson was charged with 6-7 counts of much more egregious crimes.

Christine Davisson 6 years, 11 months ago

he has already been convicted of robbery in topeka, it is now two strikes.

somebodynew 6 years, 11 months ago

Well it may be funny to you, but that is one reason Kansas went to the Sentencing Grid years ago. Takes almost all of any kind of hint of prejudice out of it. You do this crime, this is what you are looking at. You have been a bad boy before, this is how much you are looking at.

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