03 July 2006

Stupid Hateful Criminal Strikes Out

Don't expect mercy from a federal court when you videotape yourself firebombing a Jewish temple, which also happens to have a videosurveilance system of its own that catches you in the act, that also has a substantial gift shop and a large non-religious pre-school in it.

It also doesn't help to send a hate filled letter from jail to temple officials who testified at your trial, in a jail with a publicly stated policy of reviewing outgoing mail from inmates, threatening them with retaliation before your sentencing hearing. A letter saying things like: "Hail White Aryan Victory. 6 million more!", which was signed in your own blood, is not recommended as a way to procure mitigating evidence at your sentencing hearing.

Sean Michael Gillespie did these things in Oklahoma City, and was sentenced to 468 months in federal prison (i.e. 39 years), which was within, but at the top of, the sentencing guideline range.

His appeal on issues including the claim that his sentence length was cruel and unusual and did not impact interstate commerce was, not surprisingly, unsuccessful last Friday. As an aside, it turns out that having a paid day care and gift shop in your place of worship provides considerable protection under federal law, compared to a plain, old place of worship.

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