Denver, CO - The brothers-sister trio at the center of a nationwide manhunt in August 2011 has been sentenced for their crimes in Colorado. Each had the opportunity to ask for mercy.
Last year, Dylan Stanley-Dougherty, 27, Ryan Dougherty, 22, and Lee Grace, 29, embarked on what authorities have described as a 10-day nationwide crime-spree. They are accused of shooting at a police officer during a car chase in Florida and a bank robbery in Georgia.
The current sentencing concerned their actions after reaching Colorado including 11 rounds being fired from an AK47 out the car window toward pursuing officers. They were reported as traveling over 120 mph before crashing after running over stop sticks.
Defense attorneys for the siblings told the judge they were driven by desperation to help the youngest, Ryan, evade probation and that thier action were the result of a bond created after a childhood filled with tragic loss and abuse.
Dylan – who plead guilty to one charge of first-degree assault – was the first to be sentenced Monday. Described by the prosecution as the “trigger man,” prosecutors maintained that he is not remorseful. They presented additional testimony of his attempted escape from Huerfano County Jail and a “shank” found in his cell was intended to cause harm. Dylan addressed the court to say he was “truly sorry” to anyone involved including officers and innocent bystanders.
Dylan was sentenced a maximum of 32 years for the AK47 work.
Ryan – who plead guilty to five counts of felony menacing – was described by the prosecution as the “driver.” Ryan’s defense attorney called him a “pleasant kind-hearted person” and described the start of all of this being his concern that – due to his legal troubles at the time – he ‘wouldn’t get to see his unborn child.’ This after he was sentenced to 10 years probation for sexting an 11-year-old girl.
Ryan was sentenced to serve 18 years behind bars. Paradoxically, his unfounded concern turned out to be correct.
Lee Grace – who plead guilty to one count of attempted first-degree assault and two counts of felony menacing – was described by, well… everyone, as the “eye candy” of the trio. Prosecutors were more fixated on the fact that she pointed a gun at the Walsenburg Police Chief. Prosecutors and defense attorneys both agreed that Lee Grace was remorseful from the beginning. She apologized again for her actions at sentencing.
Lee Grace is already proving that a year of prison life is rough. She now has 24 to serve, altogether.
This is basically just the start of the court process for the Doughertys. They will face federal bank robbery charges in Georgia starting May 15 and charges of fleeing or eluding and attempted second-degree murder of a law enforcement officer in Florida. To make it easier on them, though, the Colorado judge ruled that the sentences here could be served concurrently with other charges in other states if the other judges make a similar ruling.
Lee Grace probably summed it up best when she told the court at sentencing, “I’d like to say it was a lapse in judgment, but 10 days is not a lapse in judgment. It was bad, poor judgment.” Yep.