Sentence increase delays VanMetre's chance of parole

December 04, 1994|By From Staff Reports

James Howard VanMetre's first chance at parole from a Pennsylvania prison will be delayed at least two years, after a judge increased his sentence for a 1991 rape and kidnapping.

Adams County, Pa., Common Pleas Judge John D. Kuhn changed VanMetre's sentence Wednesday from 13-26 years to 15 1/2 -35 years after determining the earlier sentence was illegal, court officials said.

Under the previous sentence, VanMetre, 37, of East Berlin, Pa., would have been eligible for parole in 10 years. Under the revised sentence, he first will be considered for parole in 12 years.

VanMetre had been serving a life without parole sentence on a Carroll murder conviction that was overturned when the Maryland Court of Appeals ruled that prosecutors violated the state's trial-scheduling rule.

In that case, VanMetre confessed to strangling and burning a 28-year-old Adams County waitress on a Harney farm when the two were on their first date in September 1991.

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