'White Boy' Rick Wershe's appeal for re-sentencing denied by Michigan Supreme Court
High court sides with Wayne County prosecutor
DETROIT – "White Boy" Rick Wershe will not be re-sentenced.
The Michigan Supreme Court announced in a ruling released Wednesday that it sides with Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy's office in not granting Wershe a re-sentencing.
" ... because we are not persuaded that the question presented should be reviewed by this court," the court's ruling reads.
Wershe has been serving a life sentence since he was convicted of possessing more than 650 grams of cocaine in 1988 when he was a young man. Last year, Wayne County Circuit Court Judge Dana Hathaway had agreed to re-sentence Wershe. Hathaway argued Wershe deserves a new sentence because he was sentenced at the age of 18 under an old law.
The law that has been in existence since 2003 and allows for a person convicted of the defendant's crime to receive a sentence of life with the possibility of parole, a sentence of any number of years, or even a fine," Hathaway said. "Case law over the last decade demands that we treat juveniles constitutionally different than adults. That difference requires us to consider the defendant's age at the time that the crime was committed. The court is not ruling that a life sentence for this crime is unconstitutional, it is simply saying that he's entitled to be re-sentenced given the circumstances."
Prosecutor Worthy objected to Hathaway's ruling, and in September 2015 the Court of Appeals agreed with the prosecutor and put stay on the ruling. It went to Supreme Court, who issued its decision this week and denied Wershe's request to be heard for re-sentencing.
Wershe's next possible parole hearing is in 2017.
Read: The White Boy Rick Story
Local 4 spoke with renowned attorney Alan Dershowitz this year, who has been investigating Wershe's case. He called it a "terrible injustice."
When I read the record on this case, I said to myself, 'There is something I don't know here.' There is something that is being kept from me, some information that the government has on this guy that they're not telling us, and in a democracy you can't have secret files. Everything has to be out in the open," he said.
Copyright 2016 by WDIV ClickOnDetroit - All rights reserved.