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Thomas Guthrie sentencing put on hold

News Photo by Julie Riddle Defendant Thomas Guthrie speaks to his attorney in a virtual courtroom in this July 2020 file photo.

ALPENA — An Alpena man promised a shorter prison sentence should get a look at the paperwork used to determine how long he’ll spend behind bars, a judge said Monday.

Judge Benjamin Bolser said in the 26th Circuit Court on Monday that a new report has to be created to determine the sentence Thomas Guthrie should have been given after an Alpena jury found him guilty in 2017 of sexually assaulting a man in 2005.

The Michigan Court of Appeals threw out one count for which Guthrie was found guilty and ordered the Alpena court to come up with a new prison sentence based on the change.

Already postponed several times, the resentencing will wait a while longer after defense attorney Bill Pfeifer protested that he still only had access to the original report created by the Michigan Department of Corrections, on which Guthrie’s sentence of 20 to 50 years’ incarceration was based.

In addition to the dropped charge, the presiding judge at the time of the 2017 sentencing agreed to some changes to the report, but the report was never updated, Pfeifer said.

“Mr. Guthrie has an absolute right to see that information and attack that information however he sees fit,” Pfeifer told the court.

Agreeing with Pfeifer, Bolser ordered a new report to be drawn up before Guthrie is resentenced.

In May, the Michigan Supreme Court refused to hear Guthrie’s appeal of the Court of Appeals decision upholding the one remaining charge against him.

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