Budd gets jail for vehicular homicideBuffalo/Pepin Circuit Court Judge James Duvall said Wednesday he didn’t get a lot of sleep the night before in trying to decide a proper sentence for George Budd.
By: Jason Schulte, Pierce County Herald
Buffalo/Pepin Circuit Court Judge James Duvall said Wednesday he didn’t get a lot of sleep the night before in trying to decide a proper sentence for George Budd.
The 54-year-old Beldenville native pled guilty to homicide by negligent operation of a vehicle in the death of Julie Nelson, 47, Hammond, March 17. Budd struck the motorcycle Nelson was riding on with her husband, Glen, 48. Glen was seriously injured as a result.
Before handing down his sentence, Duvall explained to a full courtroom why he agonized over his decision.
“What is the right thing?” he asked. “I wouldn’t blame the Nelson family if they said the maximum penalty” because, when addressing Budd, “you were at fault. You knew where your driveway was, you knew the road.
“You did something bad. How do we ever make amends?”
Yet, Duvall said, if Budd is sentenced to prison and he doesn’t see the light of day for a long time, what good will that do?
“Statistics show, if I want him to reoffend, I’ll send him to prison,” Duvall said, adding he’ll be torn away from his family, society and learn a whole new set of trends that won’t be conducive upon his release.
“If we keep him away from the public, he’s going to be a greater risk of causing damage,” Duvall continued. “He doesn’t get to 55 unless he’s being socially compliant.”
Therefore, Duvall placed Budd on three years’ probation with six months jail as a condition. Other conditions include no consumption of alcohol or drugs, complete an alcohol and drug assessment, maintain full-time employment, no entrance into bars or taverns without permission from the probation agent and perform 20 hours of community service monthly upon his release. Budd will start his jail term December 24.
For more please read the Dec. 26 print version of the Herald.