A former radio station owner in Lackawanna County was convicted of child sexual assault back in 2005. He was sentenced to spend at least 14 years in prison, but now Doug Lane has copped a deal with prosecutors which means six years have been shaved off that minimum sentence.
Lane will be eligible for parole in three years, instead of nine.
Under the deal, he has agreed to end his appeals and plead guilty to the charges he was convicted of in 2005. Prosecutors said a deal like this is not common, but they thought it was the best outcome for Lane’s victims.
At Lane’s sentencing in 2005 his attorney said Lane would keep appealing his conviction on sexual abuse charges.
“He understands the legal issues, and he’s resident to the fact that he can file an appeal, and we will file an appeal,” said attorney Jimmy Walker at the time.
Lane has continuously filed appeals since 2005, never successfully, but prosecutors said some of Lane’s arguments had merit, so they reached a deal.
In exchange for a lesser sentence, Lane gives up his right to an appeal. Assistant District Attorney Gene Talerico said it was the best way to provide closure for Lane’s victims.
“He’s now a convicted, admitted, sexual offender, and he’ll go and serve his time. There’s no more appeals, there’s no more chances to challenge or blame anyone for what he did. It’s on him,” said Talerico.
Six victims testified during Lane’s trial saying they had been sexually abused by him, some while he operated two radio stations in Scranton. Prosecutors said the victims were prepared to testify again if Lane ever won on appeal, but this deal saves them from having to do that.
Lane’s minimum sentence is now eight years instead of 14. He will be eligible for parole in only three years instead of nine.
“I would suggest that because of the pervasiveness of the abuse that he perpetrated he’s not a candidate to be released when he’s eligible for parole in a couple of years. We certainly will be objecting to that,” Talerico added.
There is no word why Doug Lane decided to give up his right to an appeal in exchange for a lighter sentence. He is serving his time at a state prison in western Pennsylvania.
Newswatch 16 not able to reach his attorney for comment.