Court Vacates Burglary & Rape Sentences

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

The Nebraska Court of Appeals has vacated the sentence of an Omaha man on burglary and rape convictions, saying his mental competency was in question at the time of his sentencing.

James Griffin pleaded no contest in 2005 to the charges and was sentenced to up to 10 years for burglary and up to 40 years for first-degree sexual assault. At the time, Griffin's attorney expressed concern about Griffin's competency.

Following a failed appeal, Griffin filed a motion for post-conviction relief, saying among other things that he suffered from paranoid schizophrenia at the time of his sentencing.

The Appeals Court on Tuesday said a Douglas County District Court should not have dismissed Griffin's motion without an evidentiary hearing on Griffin's competency. The Appeals Court ordered a new sentencing hearing.

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