CNN reports on the sentencing of Lillo Brancato, the Soprano's actor who was convicted of burglary in connection with the break in which resulted in the death of an off-duty policeman.
In our previous discussions of this case, here and here, we went over the question of culpability of an "unknowing" accomplice in a murder case. I feel the benefit of the doubt should be given whenever possible, that only the trigger man should pay. Others feel differently.
Today perhaps we can discuss the merits of severe sentencing, which is what I think happened here. I was hoping he'd get out on time served, having already been in for three years. My idea is that if any hope of rehabilitation exists, it is inversely proportional to the severity of the sentence. In other words, the circumstances of Lillo's case, his addiction, crime, arrest and conviction followed by sitting in jail for three years might have combined to sufficiently get his attention and turn him around. Perhaps this could be determined through psychological testing. In such a case, serving another five or so years might do more harm than good.
Another aspect of this case is the cop-killer liability. I wonder if the fact that the victim was an off-duty police officer contributed to the judge's decision. Even though Lillo was not guilty of the murder, perhaps a message was sent nevertheless, cop-killers pay a heavier price than regular killers. What do you think?
Do you agree that his 10-year sentence is a heavy one? Do you think cop-killers should be punished more severely? Do you see any similarity between this situation and the O.J. one?
Please leave a comment.