Sentencing of former Magnet teacher delayed after defense drops ball

Crime

SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – A Caddo district judge today delayed the sentencing of a 72-year-old former Caddo Magnet High School physical education teacher convicted on juvenile sex crime charge in June. 

Sharron Settlemire was convicted of attempted molestation of a juvenile on June 26, 2019. The attempted molestation happened in 2000 when the victim was a 16-year-old student at Caddo Magnet and on the fencing team Settlemire coached.

Settlemier’s sentencing was scheduled for today, but was delayed after her defense attorneys submitted around 40 letters from her supporters in court today, leaving Judge Ramona Emanuel no time to read them.

The defense did have time, however, to submit a pre-sentence memorandum on July 3, the day after Emanuel set the sentencing for today.

Judge Ramona Emanuel decided to fast-track Settlemier’s sentencing at the July 2 hearing, after denying a defense motion for Settlemier to bond out of jail until sentencing.

Prosecutor Joshua Williams told NBC6/FOX33 that the state submitted victim impact statements and letters from the victim and her family in time for the judge to read them before the actual sentencing today.  He added that Emanuel is a thorough judge who reads all the evidence submitted before making a decision.

Before submitting the letters supporting Settlemier, defense attorney Alan Goldman read excerpts from around 10 of them in open court, statements from former students and colleagues, as many of them quietly wept and held one another in the courtroom.

Then, Settlemire addressed the court, saying her 12 days of incarceration had given her many hours to reflect. She said she was not a sex predator as she was made out to be, and there had been no other occurrences. She said it was “not a matter of guilt or innocence,” and apologized for putting the families through the past four years.

She said she was almost 73 years old, and was “truly sorry for the pain I’ve caused (the victim) and her family.”

But when Williams rose to speak, he countered that Settlemier may have just apologized for the past four years, but though in her testimony, she “admitted to the fact she had inappropriate sexual contact” with the victim, she “did not offer one apology on the witness stand for the past 19 years.”

He concluded by saying she should be sentenced to jail, that her age should not be a factor in her sentencing, pointing out that recently, an 82-year-old was sentenced to 40 years in prison.

The sentencing is rescheduled for July 17.

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