Hennepin County judge rejects plea deal for 20-year-old charged in multiple robberies
Judge Paul Scoggin said the proposed sentence for Dorian Flowers was too lenient
October 13, 2023
In what he said was a first in his eight years on the bench, a Hennepin County judge rejected a plea deal - in this case a carjacker and repeat robber who had what the judge called "too many victims" to justify a sentence of probation and a year in the workhouse.
District Judge Paul Scoggin said in court Wednesday that he could not agree to the Hennepin County Attorney's proposed sentence for Dorian Flowers, 20, in exchange for guilty pleas in some of the nearly 20 charges against him. Scoggin considered the number of victims and seriousness of the offenses, but he also said the court is concerned with the number of downward departures, especially when a presentence investigation recommended that Flowers should serve prison time.
It's extremely uncommon for judges to reject pleas, and it's another setback for County Attorney Mary Moriarty, who since taking office at the beginning of the year has faced repeated criticism for efforts to enact sentencing reforms she ran on.