By Janet Jacobs
Joseph “Joey” Dauben will have to serve 15 years before he will be eligible for parole from prison, according to a sentence handed down Friday by 13th District Judge James Lagomarsino in Navarro County.
The jury found Dauben guilty of three counts of sexual assault of a child and one count of indecency with a child on Jan. 11, but the judge had resolved to do some study of whether or not the punishments would run concurrently, meaning he’d only have to serve a minimum of five years, or consecutively.
The sentence the jury gave was 10 years for each of the assaults and 10 years probation for the indecency charge.
In the final arguments, Assistant District Attorney Andrew Wolf argued that the jury wanted the terms to be served separately, or stacked one on top of another, rather than served all at once.
“At the end of the day what this court has to look at is Mr. Dauben is like any other pedophile,” Wolf said. “There’s nothing special or unique about him.”
Dauben’s own attorney agreed that this wasn’t a special situation, but he argued that the offense was one instance, that Dauben hadn’t been a repeat offender and that his previous encounters with the law hadn’t had anything to do with sexual assault.
In the end, it was the judge who ordered the sentences to run consecutively. If granted parole, Dauben could be out in 15 years, but he will then have to start his 10 years of probation. He had an additional probation charge from Ellis County.
Before the second sentence was read, Jendrzey objected, stating that stacking the sentences was a violation of the U.S. Constitution’s eighth amendment, which precludes cruel and unusual punishment, a federal case.
In addition, the judge also accepted a declaration of indigency from Dauben, asking the court to appoint another attorney for his appeal.
We'll post more on this story later today, and in the Weekend print edtion of the Daily Sun.