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Judge Donald Eyre sentenced Roberto Miramontes Roman to serve consecutive five-year sentences in cases regarding the death of Deputy Josie Greathouse Fox on Wed., October 24..

Earlier this year, a jury found Roman not guilty of capital murder, but guilty of tampering with evidence and being a restricted person in possession of a firearm. The controversial not-guilty verdict was based on the jury saying they were unable to decide beyond reasonable doubt that Roman shot and killed Deputy Fox. That jury did find Roman guilty of the two other third-degree felony charges.

“The thing that drives me, at least in my mind, is that you got away with murder,” said Judge Eyre. “It is appropriate that you receive the maximum sentences given the great pain you have caused.”

Prior to the sentence being pronounced, the defense and prosecuting attorney were allowed to offer their reasons why either concurrent or consecutive sentences should be given. In felony cases a pre-sentence report is prepared by the State with recommendations as to what the sentence should include. This report was challenged by defense attorney Stephen McCaughey and supported by prosecuting attorneys Nolan and Finlinson.

Apparently the pre-sentencing report recommended consecutive sentences. From statements made in court, the report alleged Roman’s actions contributed to the death of Deputy Fox. McCaughey said the defense felt otherwise. McCaughey also said there was no mention of Roman’s mental retardation. Judge Eyre said the report addressed the mental retardation issue. McCaughey said the type of sentence would determine what type of housing/environment Roman would be placed in in the state prison.

“He (Roman) has spent almost three years in jail in solitary confinement. We’re asking the Court to sentence him to concurrent instead of consecutive terms,” McCaughey said. Concurrent sentences would have meant the maximum time served would be five years. Consecutive terms would mean a maximum of ten years in the Utah State Prison. Roman’s sentencing imposed the maximum ten years. Roman did not make a statement on his own behalf before the sentence was imposed. However, two members of Josie Greathouse Fox’s family did offer statements to the Court prior to sentencing. Her husband Douglas Fox and her daughter, Hunter Winn, both expressed their opinions.

“Josie tried to do everything she could. She did a lot of good. She can’t do that anymore. She didn’t trust the judicial system. It was out of line this time. It’s horrible the outcome. I don’t understand the law, how the decisions were made. You’ve got one more decision to make, I hope you make the right one,” Fox told the judge.

Before Josie’s daughter made her statement, the defense attorneys gave a brief review of Roman’s criminal history to the court. Nolan told of Roman’s fluency in English and trafficking in drugs and guns. Nolan cited a statement in a 1997 pre-sentencing report in another felony case about Roman being a major drug supplier in Millard County. Roman was “at a high risk to re-offend” if released. He was found guilty, sent to prison and eventually deported to Mexico. Later, in the U.S as an illegal immigrant, Roman was the defendant in a case involving drugs, guns and the death of a Millard County Sheriff’s deputy.

“Consider the number of victims in this (the Greathouse Fox) case. Two of the Greathouse family are no longer with us…His actions played a significant part in what happened. His actions warrant a significant sentence,” argued Nolan.

“What I don’t understand is he’s spent three years in prison. We have to suffer for the rest of our lives…Why shouldn’t he suffer as long as we do? Why should he get let off?” said Winn.

Roman was sentenced to consecutive five-year terms. Judge Eyre explained the sentences the consecutive ruling was based on the gravity of the crime and because of Roman’s past criminal history.

“I intend to write a letter to the Board of Pardons recommending you serve the whole ten years. The Board of Pardons can deal with whether or not you will receive credit for time served,” said Eyre.

Roman was asked if he understood the sentence. He replied “Si.” The interpreter told the Court “Yes.”

In an interview outside the Spanish Fork Fourth District Courthouse, lawyer McCaughey said an appeal would be filed regarding the consecutive sentence. He gave no particulars about the nature of the appeal. He said Roman did not make a statement before sentencing on the advice of his lawyers as he could be facing federal charges.

“There are several federal statutes they may proceed on , we don’t know if they will,” said McCaughey.