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Archive for Friday, May 20, 2011

Jury convicts man for punching, injuring Lawrence police officer

May 20, 2011, 1:23 p.m. Updated May 20, 2011, 3:37 p.m.

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Louis. G. Galloway Jr.

Louis. G. Galloway Jr.

A Douglas County jury Friday convicted a 20-year-old Lawrence man of intentional aggravated battery of a law enforcement officer for punching and injuring a Lawrence police officer in February.

Prosecutors and District Judge Kay Huff said they expect Louis Galloway Jr. to spend some time in prison for the felony conviction. Huff revoked Galloway’s bond after the verdict was read at 12:15 p.m. Friday.

“Our law enforcement officers put their lives on the line every single day to ensure our safety,” District Attorney Charles Branson said. “When someone is not only disrespectful to them but goes so far as to injure them, I believe it demonstrates how truly dangerous that individual is to our entire community.”

Galloway was convicted of punching and injuring Officer Jonathon Evinger in a Feb. 26 confrontation near 26th and Iowa streets. According to testimony at the two-day trial, Evinger and another officer, Stephen Ramsdell, were trying to arrest Galloway for driving on a suspended license. Galloway disputed that he was driving.

Evinger has not been able to return to regular patrol duty because of the injury affecting his vision.

Jurors didn’t convict Galloway of the most severe count of intentional aggravated battery that prosecutors sought. Instead of finding that Galloway caused great bodily harm to Evinger, they reached a verdict that found his actions could have resulted in great bodily harm to the officer.

Both charges carry presumptive prison sentences, although Galloway likely faces about two years less than he could have been eligible to receive. Now he faces a sentence in a range of 38 months to 172 months in prison, depending on his criminal history.

“Regardless, he’s going to be held accountable for what he did to Officer Evinger,” said David Melton, a chief assistant district attorney who prosecuted the case.

Galloway was also convicted of three misdemeanor charges of assault and battery of Ramsdell and obstruction.

Jurors deliberated for about one hour Thursday evening and three hours Friday before reaching a verdict.

Melton on Thursday played a grainy and dark video recorded from Ramsdell’s dashboard camera in which an officer identified as Evinger can be seen falling down briefly and then later getting up to help Ramsdell try to subdue Galloway and his brother, whom Evinger sprayed with pepper spray.

Later in the video Evinger falls to the ground again while trying to lean against Ramsdell’s patrol car. Doctors said Evinger suffered a concussion as well.

Before he was injured, an altercation ensued, and at one point Galloway knocked Evinger to the ground with a punch to his left eye, prosecutors said.

Jurors watched the video at least twice in the courtroom Friday during deliberations.

Defense attorney Michael Clarke argued to jurors there was not enough evidence for them to determine that Galloway intentionally struck Evinger.

Comments

BorderRat 3 years, 5 months ago

Wow that was a fast correction.

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ebyrdstarr 3 years, 5 months ago

The judge doesn't get pick. His criminal history score will determine where in that range he falls.

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ebyrdstarr 3 years, 5 months ago

No. Kansas has a very detailed sentencing grid. For this level of crime, the sentence ranges from 38 months to 172, but that is divided between 9 boxes, based on criminal history score. In each of the 9 boxes, the judge has a choice between 3 numbers, usually separated by around 6 months. The aggravated, standard, and mitigated numbers for that severity level offense and criminal history. The judge will be able to choose between those 3 numbers, but whether the defendant falls in a box closer to 38 months or closer to 172 will be entirely based on his criminal history.

The purpose of this grid system was to create greater uniformity by greatly limiting judicial discretion.

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ebyrdstarr 3 years, 5 months ago

Downward, yes. But the judge would first have to find some serious mitigating factors. The guidelines are intended to be followed in all but exceptional cases.

A downward departure in a battery on a LEO case would be pretty unusual. That slight chance hardly earned me a full caps admonition that I was wrong.

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rousseau108 3 years, 5 months ago

Not to worry, since this is one of the guys that was shot while trying to rob someone, I'm sure his criminal history is flawless in the eyes of Douglas County.

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salem58 3 years, 5 months ago

wow, this life time winner just cant keep his hands off of people. i guess we all know how he likes to solve his problems. this little boy hasnt gotten over his temper tantrum stage. sad.

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