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Letter: Attorney has prosecuted serious crimes

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A Letter to Editor recently misinformed the public.

In the case of State v. Chad Tabaka, Tabaka pled to the most serious count charged, Criminal Vehicle Operation resulting in the death of another. The determination of whether or not Tabaka goes to prison for four years is up to the Judge, not the prosecutor. Tabaka was sentenced to 57 months. The sentence is based on the Minnesota Sentencing Guidelines, which establishes sentences for every felony that a defendant pleads or is found guilty of. Prosecutors are allowed to make recommendations to the Court, but the Court is not bound by those recommendations.

In the Tabaka case, I listened to the mother and maternal grandparents of the victim and supported their recommendation for sentencing. The letter to the editor alludes to opposition of other family members. Since that time, the maternal aunt and uncle who originally opposed the plea because of misinformation, have both been to my office and reviewed the police reports as well as the Minnesota Sentencing Guidelines and now support the plea.

I have prosecuted many serious crimes, some of which include: State v. Wright (Homicide case - 41 plus years to prison); State v. Anderson (Drug case - 104 months); State v. Christiansen (Order For Protection crime - 21 months); State v. Butcher (Felony DWI - 11 prior DWI's - 79 months); State v. Mitchell (Crim Sex case 4 counts - 27 months). In all of these cases, the sentence the Judge imposed was a Guideline Sentence. These are public records.

The voters need to be informed of the candidates records. Mine is listed on my website www.reelectdearstyne.com. Should you have additional questions or comments, please contact me.

Don Dearstyne

Hubbard County Attorney

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