A man who set fire to his ex-girlfriend's house in a fit of rage has said he should not have been given a plea deal to get a lower sentence — because it sets a bad example to other criminals.
Luther Trent, from Baltimore, Maryland, pleaded guilty to one count of first-degree arson when he torched the home of former partner Alexis while her housemates were inside.
But he says he was originally charged with 18 different counts including three of attempted homicide before being offered a plea bargain offer by prosecutors, which saw him get a reduced sentence in exchange for one guilty plea.
Now released from prison after serving less than six months, Trent says "he shouldn’t be out right now" because of how he "traumatised" and "disrupted" lives.
He told Fox 25 News: “Personally, yes, I want to be out but, principally, no I shouldn’t be out because I could have done a lot more damage than I did. I was expecting to get time; people who were in that situation, they should expect to get time.”
Speaking on the message these deals send to potential criminals, Trent added: "That tells anybody that ‘I can go shoot somebody or I can attempt to shoot somebody, and I’ll be completely fine.
“It would empower me because I would be like, okay, this man just shot somebody, just blew his head off and he’s just out walking free. I can do anything I want. I can rob somebody, I can shoot somebody, I can do anything I want.”
Victim Alexis, meanwhile, claimed that she was only given a "courtesy" call by prosecutors to inform her that the bargain would be struck with her attacker, and that her objections were not taken into account.
In a statement, the state attorney for Maryland said that the agreement had been reached because of Trent's lack of criminal background.
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