WINNSBORO — Michael Roseboro, a former Winnsboro police officer, appeared in court Monday with his attorney to appeal a sentence handed down by Judge Brooks Goldsmith in April after he pleaded guilty to assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature.
Roseboro’s estranged wife, Kisha Roseboro, spoke to say the sentence was too harsh. Upon hearing her remarks, Goldsmith reduced Michael Roseboro’s sentence by five years to 12 years in prison.
His attorney, Elnora Dean, provided written comments from some of Roseboro’s family members who were unable to make those comments at the April 11 hearing. Included in the documents was material from the couple’s pastor who gave marital counseling to the Roseboros prior to the incident as well as Michael Roseboro’s medical records.
According to Dean, Kisha Roseboro had expressed to the family that she did not want or expect Roseboro to get this long of a prison sentence. Dean said she was providing mitigating circumstances, not offering an excuse for Roseboro’s actions. She mentioned her son, now age 8, would be 22 by the time his father was released from prison.
“Seventeen years in a very long time. I understand the seriousness of the case. It happened to me with my kids present,” she said.
She said she had never hated Michael Roseboro and that the love her children have for him is stronger than the pain she has.
“I’m a victim, he is a victim,” she said. “But I am so tired of hearing the kids cry. I don’t want to go home and tell them nothing has changed and I know (assistant solicitor) Riley Maxwell was doing his job but we deal with this each day. I look back and think that 17 (years) is a long time. I guess my mind was thinking seven or eight was OK but (not 17). That’s something that murderers get.”
She said she sees the goodness that remains in her estranged husband.
“People may not understand why I am doing this, saying this,” she said. “I have talked to Mike. Do I see the old Mike again? Yes. I can’t say what his intentions will be in the future. He’s not my son (or brother or father) but I do know him. Please don’t send me back home telling the kids that nothing changed (about the sentence). I look at it at 22 when my son will see Mike walk out of prison, if he walks out.”
She said her children are talking to counselors and spoke of the pain they were going through. She said the most important thing was her children and asked for any leniency the judge could provide.
Goldsmith said Kisha Roseboro’s statement was one of the most compelling statements he had ever heard given on behalf of a defendant. He gave that consideration before reducing the sentence from 17 years to 12 years.
Prior to the ruling in the case, Maxwell pointed out several previous instances of domestic violence that occurred prior to the shooting. He recounted how Roseboro shot his estranged wife and that, according to witnesses, there was not provocation before he fired at her torso, a shot Maxwell said was meant to kill.
Maxwell reminded the court of leniency already shown in the case when a plea to a lesser charge was accepted as an alternative to a jury trial for an attempted murder charge. A jury-directed guilty verdict on a murder charge would have carried a maximum 30-year prison sentence.
At the April 11 plea, Goldsmith had sentenced Roseboro to 17 years in prison, not counting time served for the October 2012 shooting of his estranged wife. The sentence was part of a plea down from an attempted murder charge which carried a heavier sentence.
Contact Kevin Boozer at 635-4016 ext. 14 or email@example.com and follow him on Twitter at @kevinboozer.