Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

Opinion

July 14, 2013

HOPKINS: Hitting high tide on two issues

(Continued)

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal —

•••

Another surprising moment for me happened on Thursday, when David Alfonso asked for more time before deciding whether to accept a plea deal for an incident that occurred on New Year’s Eve.

Alfonso is accused of attempted murder, assault and strangulation when he allegedly attacked his girlfriend’s 7-year-old daughter. An offer from the Niagara County District Attorney’s office would allow Alfonso to plead guilty to attempted assault, which would land him in jail for up to 15 years.

Here’s where I’m surprised: Alfonso would like to see the sentence capped at 10 years. Fortunately, Assistant District Attorney Holly Sloma isn’t going for it.

The crime for which Alfonso is accused is so heinous, he shouldn’t be shown leniency. According to police reports, Alfonso tried to rip the girl’s jaw from her face, and even tried to yank the child’s tongue and teeth from her mouth.

The girl’s mother stabbed Alfonso in an attempt to stop him. Fortunately, the girl was able to get away, and ran to her grandmother’s house. Despite the stab wound, Alfonso had to be subdued by Lockport Police with a Taser electronic stun gun.

And now he wants leniency.

In the court system, many inmates get out of jail early for good behavior. The rule of thumb is one month is reduced from the sentence for every two months the inmate behaves. If Alfonso is sentenced to 15 years, he’d be eligible for parole after 10 years, assuming he stays out of trouble while in the clink.

Considering what he stands accused of, that’s a pretty good deal: he’d be out of jail before he was 40 years old. But apparently that’s not good enough for Alfonso. He’s seeking a 10-year cap, which means he could be a free man after just 6 years and eight months, and still be in his mid-30s.

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