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The Leavenworth Times - Leavenworth, KS
  • Defendant who led officers on chase sentenced

  • A Leavenworth County man who led deputies on a series of foot pursuits has been sentenced to a year in prison.
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  • A Leavenworth County man who led deputies on a series of foot pursuits has been sentenced to a year in prison.
    Randall W. Kratzer, 31, rural Tonganoxie, was sentenced Wednesday in Leavenworth County District Court for two charges of possession of stolen property and one count of obstruction of an official duty. The crimes were committed in June.
    Kratzer was charged with one of the possession of stolen property counts and the obstruction charge in one case. And he was charged with the remaining possession of stolen property count in a second case.
    He pleaded no contest to the charges last month, according to court records.
    Kratzer led members of the Leavenworth County Sheriff’s Office on three foot pursuits June 25 in Linwood. He was able to finally elude officers by swimming across Stranger Creek and going into a wooded area, Sheriff’s Office officials reported at the time.
    He reportedly had been in possession of a stolen motorcycle the night of the incident.
    He was arrested several days later at a residence on 149th Terrace and at that time was in possession of a stolen 2002 Jaguar car, according to Sheriff’s Office officials.
    During Wednesday’s sentencing hearing, District Judge Gunnar Sundby said the two cases were considered “presumptive probation” under state sentencing guidelines. But the judge had the option of sentencing Kratzer to prison because the defendant had been on probation at the time the crimes were committed.
    According to a Kansas Department of Corrections website, Kratzer was convicted in 2010 in Wyandotte County for misdemeanor charges of theft and driving under the influence. He also was convicted in 2010 in Jefferson County for aggravated battery, which is a felony, and a misdemeanor assault charge.
    Sherri Becker, assistant county attorney for Leavenworth County, recommended Wednesday that Kratzer be sentenced to two years in prison and that the sentence run consecutive to whatever time he may owe for his prior convictions.
    Kratzer’s attorney, Gary Fuller, argued for probation. The defense attorney said Kratzer’s behavior was attributable to an addiction problem.
    Fuller said the defendant is motivated to make changes in his life.
    The defense attorney noted that Kratzer already has been in custody at the Leavenworth County Jail for almost five months.
    During her arguments, Becker had said Kratzer entered a Department of Veterans Affairs treatment program while on probation for one of his earlier cases, but the program was unsuccessful because the defendant had not maintained sobriety.
    When given the opportunity to speak Wednesday, Kratzer said he had “messed up.”
    He said alcoholism and drug addiction are his key problem. He requested that he be allowed to enter into a state treatment program.
    Page 2 of 2 - “I do take full responsibility for what I’ve done,” he said.
    Sundby said Kratzer previously had not been amenable to treatment while on probation.
    He said previously attempts to make Kratzer a law-abiding citizen have failed.
    Sundby imposed the one-year sentence. He did not order that it run consecutive to any time the defendant may owe in earlier cases.
    The judge said the five months Kratzer has spent in the county jail will not be applied toward the 12-month sentence because the defendant has been held in custody for other cases.

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