Who's Going to Prison from Kenton County?
Each week The River City News talks with Kenton County Commonwealth's Attorney Rob Sanders about his weekly e-newsletter that highlights who was sent to prison or got probation in the previous week. At the bottom of this post you can find a link to that newsletter. Here are this week's questions and answers:
RCN: Looks like we have another identity theft conviction this week and now Toshawn Sims is headed to prison for a year and a half. What did this guy do?
SANDERS: Sims went to prison for 9 years in June, 2010 after being convicted of Facilitation of Robbery 1st Degree. In that case, Sims set up a robbery but the victim was not only robbed, he was killed. Broderick Brown was charged with murder and robbery in that case but a jury found him Not Guilty, in large part because our main witnesses for the prosecution were Sims and several dancers from the Venus lounge. Certainly not the kinds of folks we'd choose if we ever got to pick our witnesses. Unfortunately, only the criminals control who will witness a crime. The offense actually occurred in 2006 before I was in office. Had it occurred during my tenure, I think things probably would have gone a lot better for the Commonwealth. But I digress... Sims was let out early on parole. He quit reporting to his parole officer so a warrant was issued for his arrest. Sims knew he was wanted and when stopped by a Covington Police officer, he gave someone else's identifying info. Like usual, however, the good guys are pretty skilled at sniffing out a liar. They got a photo of the guy who Sims claimed to be and it obviously wasn't him. As I mentioned previously, this is, by far, the most common form of identity theft even though it's not what most people think of when they think 'identity theft.
RCN: If Sims was sentenced to 9 years in 2010, how did he get paroled so soon? Isn't Facilitation of Robbery 1st a violent crime?
SANDERS: It's a violent crime to you, me, and anyone else who envisions being a victim of a robbery, but not to our legislature! In fact, you would be amazed at the crimes KY's legislature considers "non-violent": Arson 2nd (burning down your house), Arson 3rd (burning any other building), Robbery 2nd, Assault 2nd, Assault 3rd, Manslaughter 2nd, Reckless Homicide, Burglary 1st (without injury), Burglary 2nd, Burglary 3rd, Trafficking any amount of drugs in any quantity, Sexual Abuse, Rape 2nd, Rape 3rd, Distribution of Child Porn, Facilitation of Murder, and even Attempted Murder if no one is injured. It's insane. All of these "non-violent" offenses require only 20% service of a sentence before the felon is parole eligible. And don't get me started on all the "good time" credits that shorten a sentence. We'll have to save that for a future interview because there's not enough time left in this one.
RCN: We see a lot of burglary convictions in your newsletter every week. What can people do to reduce their chances of being targeted by burglars?
SANDERS: The easiest and most obvious answer is "lock your doors." Sounds almost silly to have to tell people that but a lot of these burglaries happen in affluent suburbs where people don't really think crime is a problem. The days of "We don't have to lock our doors because we live in..." Ft. Mitchell or Edgewood or Crestview Hills or Taylor Mill or wherever, are over. Many burglars don't actually break in, they walk in, often times through an open garage door, and sometimes while the owners are home. More expensive answers include an alarm system or large dog. Both cost a lot of money over time but are still cheaper than replacing all your valuables. Home owners should also treat their house, especially the first floor, like they should be treating their cars: Don't leave valuables or purses in plain sight. If a burglar can see it, they can probably throw a brick through your window or patio door, snatch it, and be long gone before anyone or even any alarm or dog can do much about it. Anything that can be easily pawned (electronics, jewelry, guns, etc) should be kept hidden or at least upstairs.
See the full list and mugshots of those who were convicted of felonies in Kenton County Circuit Court, including the ones referenced above, at the link: This Week in Kenton Circuit Court
PHOTO: Toshawn Sims