Baker sentenced in 2014 murder

After waiting three years, Patrick Baker knows his fate. The judge upheld the jury’s recommended sentence after the jury found Baker guilty of gunning down Donald Mills in 2014.

Circuit Judge David Williams said, “I’ve been practicing law for over 40-something years, I’ve never seen a more compelling or complete case, unless someone had a film… With all these things considered, I’m going to exercise the discretion that is given by the statute.”

Judge Williams agreed with the jury’s sentencing recommendation of five years for reckless homicide, 12 years for first-degree robbery, one year for tampering with physical evidence and one year for impersonating a peace officer, altogether a total of 19 years in prison to be served consecutively. “I’m sentencing you to 19 years, because that’s all I can give you. If I could give you more, I would,” said the judge.

Judge Williams spoke directly to Baker and said, “You had the right to remain silent, and you chose that. But I also have the right to look at what has happened here and see your lack of acceptance and responsibility.”

According to his attorney, Billy Taylor, Baker will become eligible for parole in 12 years.

The last defendent in the Mills murder case, Elijah Messer, is due back in court in January for a pretrial conference.