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Appeals Court Reverses Caraway Murder Sentence

Last updated on Monday, November 21, 2011

(INDIANAPOLIS) - The Indiana Court of Appeals has reversed a 65 year prison sentence and ordered a new sentencing for Larry Michael “Mike” Caraway, of Washington Ave., who killed his wife Denise.

On Oct. 7, 2009, Caraway came home drunk and shot his wife, 48-year-old Denise Caraway, seven times, killing her in their home.

In accepting his guilty plea, the trial court, Lawrence Circuit advised him he would likely get a 45 to 55 year prison term. He began his appeal when Judge Andrea McCord sentenced him to 65 years in prison.

The Indiana Court of Appeals has ruled the lower court abused discretion in its higher sentence failing to acknowledge Caraway's guilty plea.

The 65 year sentence has been reversed and the trial court has been ordered to re-sentence Caraway so that the court can properly weigh the appropriate aggravating and mitigating circumstances involved in the crime.

Public defender Lorinda Youngcourt argued Caraway's criminal past didn't include violent crimes and that his alcoholism is a disease and shouldn't be considered an aggravating circumstance. She also argued there was no evidence of previous domestic abuse.

She argued Caraway was remorseful for shooting his wife to death as was evident by his choice to spend eight months in solitary confinement after his arrest. She said Caraway doesn't deserve the maximum sentence and that Indiana law is clear that a maximum sentence is reserved for the very worst of the worst and he is not that.

Initially, Caraway told police he and his wife were arguing about bills when she retrieved a gun and shot herself. He later admitted he had fabricated that story.

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