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ISSAQUAH LAW GROUP

Issaquah Law Group: Experienced Counsel; Client Focus

PHILOSOPHY: Formed in 2014, Issaquah Law Group is a law firm with one focus: providing businesses and insurers with high quality legal representation with the responsiveness of a smaller firm. ILG was founded on the principle that strong client relationships are the key to successful legal representation and strong relationships are built upon clear and consistent communication. 

LITIGATION: We work closely with our clients to fully and accurately understand their goals, work collaboratively to formulate specific legal strategies, and execute the agreed plan of action utilizing methods most likely to result in the efficient and effective resolution of the matter. ILG attorneys have a broad base of litigation experience to draw on in all Federal and State courts from on-the-ground investigations to Supreme Court appeals in the areas of personal injury and wrongful death, product liability, commercial general liability, labor & employment, construction litigation, and catastrophic losses due to fire and explosion.

BUSINESS LAW: Rarely is the path from point A to point B a straight line, so our role in a business law practice is to find alternatives, devise workable strategies, and keep your business ideas, goals and objectives moving toward realization. ILG’s business attorneys help clients achieve their goals with respect to business formation, intellectual property, labor and employment, CAN-SPAM, copyright and trademark

COMMUNITY: In addition, the Lawyers at Issaquah Law Group remain active in the legal and civic community. A core commitment of our Issaquah Attorneys is community service. Our attorneys' civic involvement includes the King County Civil Rights Commission; the City of Issaquah Planning Policy Commission; the Northwest Screenwriters Guild, service as a pro tem judge. We live and work in the Pacific Northwest, and we aim to make it a better place.

In addition, through The Amateur Law Professor Blog and LinkedIn postings, we share pertinent opinions and decisions of the Washington State Supreme Court, as well as the pertinent opinions and decisions of the Washington State Courts of Appeal so that our clients can be as update to date on cutting legal issues as we are.

WA Supreme Court: Judges Hands Not Tied With High Sentence Per SRA Downward Departure Guidelines

State v. Graham

People make mistakes. Sometimes people make really big mistakes. In this case, Graham made the mistake of running around shooting at cops during a foot chase in Spokane. This led to a conviction on a large amount of charges, each of them carrying a pretty extreme penalty. This meant that under the Sentencing Reform Act, the sentencing range would’ve effectively kept him in there for a lifetime. The Sentencing Reform Act does allow a judge some discretion, when all of the charges arise from one event:

The court may impose an exceptional sentence below the standard range if it finds that mitigating circumstances are established by preponderance of the evidence. The following are illustrative only and are not intended to be exclusive reasons for exceptional sentences.

… The operation of the multiple offense policy of RCW 9.94A.589 results in a presumptive sentence that is clearly excessive in light of the purpose of this chapter, as expressed in RCW 9.94A.010

Here, the judge actually put on the record that he believed the sentence was excessive in light of the purposes but that his hands were tied. Turns out his hands weren’t so much tied as they were not fully informed. This happens from time to time, as no judge can be expected to have a total recall as to every law, every exception, and every policy determination, including how all of them interlink. The Supreme Court remanded for resentencing in lieu of this mitigations allowed in the Sentencing Perform Act.

We take this opportunity to reaffirm that a sentencing judge may invoke .535(1)(g) to impose  exceptional sentences both for multiple violent and nonviolent offenses scored under .589(l)(a) and for multiple serious violent offenses under .589(1)(b).

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