The Minnesota Court of Appeals ruled today that if someone shoots somebody, they can be given a harsher sentence for not helping them with their injury.
The court ruled in the appeal of Clemmie Tucker Jr., who was convicted of second-degree murder in the death of Angelina Garley. According to the court, left a Minneapolis bar in June 2005 with Angelina Garley, played cat-and-mouse with their vehicles until — when they stopped in a residential neighborhood — Tucker walked up to Garley’s car and shot her. She died at the hospital.
Tucker was sentenced to almost 19 years in prison, rather than the 12 1/2 years under the state’s sentencing guidelines because he didn’t check on Garley’s condition after firing his gun into her car.
Tucker argued that he didn’t know he wounded Garley, so he couldn’t be held responsible for not checking to see if she was OK.
Appeals Court Judge Gordon W. Shumaker didn’t buy the argument, writing that Tucker’s “cruelty — beyond that of the crime itself — was his indifference as to whether (Garley) was in fact injured and needed medical attention. The special cruelty of such indifference is clear because it can mean that the offender not only inflicted serious injury, but also deprived the victim of at least a chance to survive the injury.”