by Jeanne Sager
The teenage boy who killed 10-year-old Jessica Ridgeway will never again see the light of day outside a prison. After two days of hearing from witnesses, a Colorado judge handed down a sentence for 18-year-old Austin Sigg that will keep him behind bars for the rest of his life. Not only will Sigg have to serve a life sentence, but he's gotten another 86 years tacked on to make sure he does not walk free.
Eighteen and never going to live outside a prison. Sadly, this is the best news we could have asked for. Especially considering Sigg could have gotten out. Thank goodness a judge decided he was too "evil" for that possibility.
Colorado law dictates that juveniles -- even juveniles charged as adults -- are to be given the chance of parole after 40 years of a life sentence. Sigg was 17 at the time of the kidnap and murder, so he fell under that rule. By tacking on the additional 86-year sentence, what the judge essentially did was circumvent that law -- albeit legally. He'll have to serve the two sentences consecutively.
Now, I understand why the law was put in place. It's not a good feeling to know that there is a kid out there bad enough to warrant more than 40 years in prison.
But when you examine the facts of this case -- not just what happened to Jessica, who was dismembered(!), but also Sigg's nonchalance about what he'd done -- that's the only conclusion you can draw. Some kids are sick. So sick they belong in prison for life, if only so they don't hurt someone else when they come out.
As Jefferson County District Court Chief Judge Stephen Munsinger reportedly said as he handed down the sentence that will keep Austin Sigg in prison for the rest of his life:
Evil is apparently real. It was present in our community on October 5, 2012.
Hopefully this chapter closing will help Jessica's family move on, knowing Austin Sigg can never get out of prison to hurt another girl like their daughter.
What do you think of the sentence? Is it too much or just right?
Do you think kids are inherently evil or is it learned?