Wednesday, Sep 28, 2016
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Appeals court upholds Sandusky man's sentence

SANDUSKY - A state appellate court has rejected a Sandusky man's bid to overturn his 40-year prison term for the rape and murder of a 48-year-old woman nearly three years ago.

Brandon Holt, 26, was convicted last year of aggravated murder, rape, and aggravated burglary for the June 27, 2002, slaying of Deborah Jensen of Sandusky.

Holt pleaded guilty to the charges as part of an agreement that allowed him to avoid a possible death sentence.

The 6th District Court of Appeals on Thursday upheld the sentence imposed by Erie County Common Pleas Judge Beverly McGookey, who ordered Holt to serve life in prison with the possibility of parole after 20 years for the aggravated murder count, plus consecutive 10-year terms for the other two counts.

Holt's appeal argued that Judge McGookey did not meet the legal standard required for consecutive terms, but the appeals court said the sentence was supported by "clear and convincing evidence."

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