OUR TURN - Derrick Bland Sentence Overruled

. - Air: Tuesday, 09/29/15

Two years ago Derrick Bland got into an argument with his nephew, James Stockton. Bland left the apartment where the two men were staying, waited for Stockton to come out, and when he did. Bland shot him three times. As he lay on the ground dying, Bland went over and shot him three more times. A jury this year reached a unanimous verdict, convicting Bland of second-degree murder, sentencing him to life in prison.

Now comes the judge in the case, Trudy White, to overrule the jury's verdict, saying that Bland was drunk so he could only be guilty of negligent homicide which has a maximum penalty of five years in prison.

District Attorney Hillar Moore says he will appeal that decision and we hope he succeeds. There's something seriously wrong here. Either Judge White is completely mistaken about the law, or the maximum sentence for negligent homicide needs to be increased. There's no way that a five-year sentence is fitting for this crime, and the citizens of our community should not have to fear Derrick Bland being back on the streets here in 2020.

That's "Our Turn." Now, it's your turn. To comment on this segment or anything else, visit us on Facebook or send an email to yourturn@wafb.com.