JUSTICE VENTERS SAYS “WE REJECT THE USE OF …PLEA AGREEMENTS AS MARKETING DEVICES TO ENCOURAGE DEFENDANTS TO PLEAD GUILTY (BY OVERCHARGING THEM)

 

Justice Venters once again gets it right!

 

Machniak v. Commonwealth Of Ky. (Ky., 2010) DECEMBER 16, 2010

 

OPINION OF THE COURT BY JUSTICE VENTERS

REVERSING AND REMANDING

The Commonwealth argues in support of enforcing the plea agreement in this case that “these kinds of pleas” are very useful in promoting the settlement of cases on the heavy criminal dockets of our circuit courts. We are told “it’s a little more enticing to defendants to say your sentence is three years,” as opposed to twenty years. The Commonwealth contends, “The reality is that twenty years sounds like a big number.” Notwithstanding the plea agreement’s conflict with KRS 532.110(1), we reject the use of such plea agreements as marketing devices to encourage defendants to plead guilty.

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