Leniency denied in lewd conduct case

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SANDPOINT — Leniency was denied Friday for a Bonner County man who was sentenced to up 15 years in prison for lewd and lascivious conduct with a minor.

Matthew Herrick Carlin will have to serve at least five years of the sentence before he can be considered for parole.

Carlin asked for the five-year determinate portion of the sentence be reduced so he gain access to sex offender treatment. He also argued that imprisonment would also interfere with his treatment because it would harden him emotionally, according to 1st District Court records.

Bonner County Chief Deputy Prosecutor Shane Greenbank opposed a reduction because of the seriousness of the offense and because the determinate portion of sentence was considered in detail when Carlin was sentenced last November, court records indicate.

Judge Barbara Buchanan denied the request, finding that Carlin could still obtain treatment while incarcerated with the Idaho Department of Correction. Moreover, Buchanan found that Carlin received leniency in light of a state’s recommendation for 10-year term of determinate confinement, according to court documents.

Carlin, 50, was originally charged with three counts of lewd conduct against a girl in 2014, when she was between the ages of a 5-6 years old. The charges against Carlin did not emerge, however, until 2017.

Carlin entered an Alford plea to a single count of lewd conduct to resolve the case against him. Although Carlin contends he has taken responsibility for his offenses, the nature of his plea allowed him to sidestep moral culpability while at the same time acknowledging the state possesses enough evidence to gain a conviction at trial.

Keith Kinnaird can be reached by email at kkinnaird@bonnercountydailybee.com and follow him on Twitter @KeithDailyBee.

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