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February 14, 2013

Judge upholds sentence in 2009 murder case

SOMERSET — A Somerset County judge has denied a request to modify the sentence of a man implicated in a 2009 murder.

Judge D. Gregory Geary said he will not change the sentence of 27-year-old Ronald Lee Ziegel Jr.

Ziegel, of Friedens, was sentenced in September 2012 to serve eight to 30 years for his guilty plea to third-degree murder.

That sentence was consecutive to the nine-month to three-year sentence Ziegel was serving for a drug case from 2008.

Merging the cases would have essentially cut three years off remaining prison time.

“In reaching our decision we considered the defendant’s instrumental cooperation with the commonwealth, but concluded that he already received adequate consideration for his cooperation in the form of a mitigated sentence,” Geary wrote on Monday, according to the clerk of courts office. “We further concluded that a consecutive sentence is appropriate given the circumstances presented in this case.”

It was Ziegel who drove Toriano McCray, 38, and Roland Washington II, 26, both of Michigan, to a home in Bakersville in August 2009.

McCray and Washington shot and killed Bryant Adderley in a dispute involving drugs.

They were sentenced to serve 10 to 30 years and 7 1/2 to 30 years, respectively, in state prison.

 

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