Motion filed to reconsider sentence of man who murdered wife
By Jim Newton email@example.com August 29, 2013 12:34PM
Updated: October 1, 2013 6:25AM
A Vernon Hills man sentenced earlier this month to eight years in prison for the 2011 death of his wife could be out of prison within a year.
A motion to reconsider the eight-year sentence given to Ronald Stolberg of Vernon Hills following his conviction of involuntary manslaughter charges will be heard next month in Lake County Circuit Court.
Stolberg’s attorneys, Kevin Rosner and Bill Hedrick, are seeking both reconsideration of the sentence, a move that clears the way for an Appellate Court appeal, and a decision by Judge Mark Levitt to allow the time Stolberg spent under electronic monitoring to count toward his prison sentence.
If the court rules the 411 days Stolberg spent on electronic monitoring counts as time served toward his sentence, he would have a year or less left to serve in prison, according to his attorneys.
“It makes a big difference,” Hedrick said.
Stolberg, 49, was charged with first-degree murder in the June 8, 2011, death of his wife, Rachel.
Authorities said that he suffocated his 54-year-old wife after she poked him awake for the fourth time in the middle of the night. Both prosecutors and defense attorneys agreed Rachel suffered from mental illness.
After deliberating for more than five hours, a Lake County jury in May found him guilty of involuntary manslaughter.
On Aug. 8, Levitt sentenced him to eight years in prison.
On Thursday, Aug 29, Levitt scheduled a hearing on the motion to reconsider for Friday, Sept. 13.
Stolberg has already been given credit for the 403 days he has spent in Lake County Jail, and if the 411 days of electronic monitoring is also counted, he would have roughly a year left to spend in prison due in part to time credited for good behavior.
“And that can be shortened if he participates in certain programs,” Hedrick said.
Rosner and Hedrick said a state statute was amended earlier this year to say that a judge “shall” give credit for home confinement from previous wording that said a judge may allow such credit.
Levitt asked the defense attorneys to provide any potential case law on the issue at the Sept. 13 hearing.