Man wants sentence reduced in stabbing death case
A Lehighton man wants the Carbon County court to reduce his sentence in a stabbing death case.
Michael D. Mokshefski, 49, filed a petiton for reconsideration of sentence several months ago and on Thursday Senior Judge Richard W. Webb conducted a hearing on the request.
Webb had sentenced Mokshefski to serve seven and a half to 15 years in a state prison on a charge of voluntary manslaughter in the death of George W. McClure, 42, of Weissport, on Aug. 14, 2006, outside the victim's mother's home along Alum Street, in Lehighton.
Mokshefski previously pleaded guilty to the charge and was sentenced by Webb on July 6, 2009. After pleading and beginning his prison term Mokshefski filed a petition to withdraw his plea and asked for a new attorney stating he and public defender Atty. George Dydynsky did not get along. Dydynsky agreed and said at the prior hearing that he and Mokshefski could not agree on matters in the case.
Webb granted the request and appointed Atty. Kent D. Watkins, of St. Clair, to represent Mokshefski.
Webb held a hearing on the request to withdraw the guilty plea and took the matter under advisement. Webb denied the request in a order handed down in late December 2009.
Yesterday Webb took the request for reconsideration under advisement.
Watkins claimed in his argument to the court that an extensive psychiatric report on Moksheski indicated that the defendant has many health problems along with mental health issues.
He asked Webb to reduce the sentence because of these problems that Moksheski is experiencing. Moksheski has claimed his illnesses were life-threatening.
District Attorney Gary F. Dobias argued that the sentence imposed was a fair one and that many defendants have health problems and that the state prison system is well equipped to handle them. He said a reduction of the sentence would not serve justice in the case.
Webb said he would reveiew the extensive medical report and then render a decision.