6 Year Sentencing Delay

July 29, 2003  Posted at 7:31 a.m. CDT

LITTLE ROCK, Ark.  --Saline County officials are at a loss to explain how a convicted rapist has gone almost six years without being sentenced.

Michael Shane Jolly was never sentenced after pleading guilty to raping a 12-year-old girl in October of 1997. He's now scheduled to receive his punishment on Monday. Court records show Jolly was originally scheduled to be sentenced February second, 1998, but the sentencing was not held on that date.

Saline County Prosecutor Robert Herzfeld found out about the lapse in January and has arranged for the new sentencing hearing. Saline County Circuit Court Clerk Doug Kidd says hearings are usually scheduled through the judge's office so he doesn't know why Jolly was never sentenced.

After learning of the unresolved case, Herzfeld obtained a court order for Jolly to appear before a judge and explain why he should not be sentenced but the sheriff's office never served the order. Jolly's attorney, Joe Kelly Hardin, says his client has never tried to avoid punishment and continues to live in the community.

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