Ryan Dougherty, Lee Grace Dougherty and Dylan Dougherty Stanley could be released in 30 years with time off for good behavior, the judge ruled.
The federal sentencing was part of a three-state plea deal in which the three siblings will be able to serve all of their sentences in federal prison at the same time. The sentences they received in Colorado state court and any they receive in Florida will be vacated in lieu of their longer federal sentence.
Sentencing Guidelines Ignored
In Colorado, Ryan received 18 years, Lee Grace got 24 years and Dylan got 32. Those sentences were vacated as part of the plea agreement, but Colorado judge Claude Appel retained the ability to re-impose those sentences if needed.
After the hearing, Ryan Dougherty called the 35-year sentence "not in line with the crimes I've committed." Many times in federal court, bank robbers receive sentences of 5 years or less, but Judge Lawson took into account the acts of the defendants after the actual robbery.
"Let me say this - this was a crazy dangerous thing," the judge said. "I just think it is a miracle that no one was killed."
'A Crazy, Dangerous Thing'
During the bank robbery, Lee Grace and Dylan each fired one shot into the ceiling of the Certus Bank, while Ryan grabbed $5,168 from the teller drawers. Earlier that day in Florida and eight days later in Colorado, the gang fired shots at pursuing police vehicles.
When their vehicle wrecked in the Colorado chase, Lee Grace was shot in the leg after she pointed a gun at a police officer. In court yesterday, her attorney told the court that she was suicidal and wanted the police to shoot her.
Defense attorneys argued that the siblings' action in Colorado, where their crime spree ended eight days later in a chase and shootout with law enforcement, should not have been considered a part of their "immediate flight" from the bank robbery.
But Judge Lawson ruled that the gang was in "continuous flight" from the time they left the Valdosta, Georgia bank. The siblings still face charges in Florida where their Aug. 2, 2011 crime spree began.
The Dougherty Gang
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