Actress Amy Locane reacts to again being sentenced for DUI death
I first met Amy Locane when we were both appearing at the Seth Nemeroff Foundation fundraiser to raise money for those fighting opioid addiction. Amy continues that fight as a life coach for City Of Angels. She was instrumental in speaking with Artie Lange the night he came to New Jersey 101.5 and decided to enter rehab.
Now, Amy Locane may end up back in prison for a crime she has already served both time and parole for. The same prisons that criminals are currently being released from due to COVID-19.
A judge has ruled that Locane will be sentenced a fourth time for the 2010 DUI crash that killed Helene Seeman and seriously injured her husband, Fred.
According to the Associated Press: "An appeals court ruled that a different judge incorrectly resentenced her last year, and sent the case back for another sentencing. The ruling also rejected Locane’s argument that sentencing her again violates double jeopardy protections since she’s already completed her sentence and parole term."
The appeals court also held that Locane waived double jeopardy protections when she voluntarily began serving her initial sentence while the state was still appealing it.
“When the government timely appeals an initial sentence or a sentence imposed at a re-sentencing, a defendant is put on notice that the sentence may change and he or she cannot acquire a legitimate expectation of finality,” the judges wrote.
Amy Locane, who came on my show Monday night, continues to express remorse for what she did 10 years ago:
"Absolutely (I'm remorseful)! I mean there's a part of me that is just like, you know, someone has died here so I'm not, you know sometimes I feel guilty even, I feel like I'm complaining," Locane said.
Amy has complied with everything the court has asked, and yet they keep trying to put her back in prison. What was does James Wronko, Amy's lawyer who was also on the call Monday night, think about the ruling that double jeopardy doesn't apply and that Amy can be sentenced again?
"I respectfully disagree with the appellate division on both counts," Wronko said. "This is the first case that I'm aware of where an individual has served their entire sentence; jail, parole, and then two years after, they're gonna put her back in and say double jeopardy doesn't apply. I think the court has kind of re-written the law of double jeopardy in that regard.
"Sending it back for a new sentencing is probably even more surprising. ... I've never heard of a sentence being appealed when it falls within the statutory range," Wronko continued. "So the range here was five to 10, Amy was given a five. I have no reason to understand why they would allow a re-sentencing, I think it's wrong. We're gonna ask the Supreme Court to review it, and frankly if it goes forward I think it's gonna have a dramatic effect on future sentence appeals by the state, which is gonna go well beyond this one case."
Was three years in prison enough time served in her opinion?
"I met a lot of girls who had the same charges I did and they had a three-year bid," Locane said. "And I also met girls who had a five and I met girls who had seven-year bids, and that's the lawyers. Lawyers figure that out. That's not for us to figure out."
I asked if Amy were given the chance to address the court of public opinion, what would she say?
"I would say that what happened was absolutely horrible. That it it was horrible on all sorts of levels for everyone," she said. "It happened in 2010. I tried to do everything I possibly could to not be that person that I was. I worked really hard at rehabilitating myself. I took every class that they offered when I was in prison on rehabilitation. You know, I got sober, I did everything that I possibly could. And I did it because I wanted to do it and I'm happy that I did it because it made me who I am. ... I guess I would just say we're all human beings, we all make mistakes and it's how you handle them. And I just think it's terrible to not be given a second chance."
The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Steve Trevelise. Any opinions expressed are Steve's own. Steve Trevelise is on New Jersey 101.5 Monday-Thursday from 7pm-11pm. Follow him on Twitter @realstevetrev.
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