Crime and Punishment


I’ve covered a lot of trials. But not like this.

Because this is a different kind of trial.  It seldom happens.

The jurors, rather than considering whether a man is guilty or innocent of a crime, will instead deliberate what punishment he deserves for committing it.

The background: Delonde Pleasant pleaded guilty in 2003 when prosecutors reduced the murder charge against him to manslaughter.

The standard sentence for manslaughter ranges between six and eight years. But the original judge threw the book at Pleasant and sentenced him to 25 years in prison, a sentence an appellate court overturned two years ago. The appellate court ruled a jury must deliberate whether circumstances merit a sentence beyond the standard.

And that’s where we are today.

The defense hopes to convince jurors that Pleasant, who has spent nine years in prison,  has served long enough. Prosecutors say they’re confident jurors will send Pleasant back to prison for another sixteen years when they hear the details of how Pleasant brutally, cruelly, and mercilessly pummeled Juanita Montelongo to death in a drunken rage while their toddler son heard it all in the adjacent room.

The trial is expected to last through next week. I’ll be there, and I’ll let you know what happens.

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6 Comments

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6 responses to “Crime and Punishment

  1. JAIME

    THEY SHOULD GIVE HIM THE DEAF SENTENCE HE DESERVES IT HE DID EVEN KILL HIS OWN LITTLE SISTER HIS OWN BLOOD WHAT MAKE’S YOU THINK HE WON’T DO THE SAME

  2. Jennifer Mangum

    I can remember like it was just yesterday how brutality bad he abused her. No time that he will even spend behind bars will ever be enough. He was a cocky & self centered jerk then, and he still is now! God will deal with him. I just pray for Angel, her boys, and the rest of Juanita’s family & friends that the Lord speak through these jurors, and they hand him the sentence he so deserves and that be nothing less then what the judge has already ordered.

    • Kathy Peterson

      Jennifer I totally agree. My ex- husband was a Pasco police officer and had numerous dealings with him & other members of his family… They all thought they were above the law. I remember the day he was arrested–then pleading guilty to her murder… I also hope they give him nothing more than what the judge has already ordered. And then that isn’t enough time, in my opinion.

  3. It will be interesting to see what the jury thinks.

  4. Kathy Peterson

    9 years is not enough for the heinous crime he committed.. I don’t think he should get off just because HE thinks he’s served enough time in prison.

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