Editorials

Justice for all?

An assistant bank branch manager in Lexington steals $34,665 from her employer, pays back most of it and gets three years in prison.

A former University of Kentucky basketball player runs a ticket scam that costs his victims about $70,000 and gets eight years in prison.

Executives of Blue Grass Airport go on a personal spending spree with their employer's credit cards and run up more than $500,000 in inappropriate or questionable expenses over three years and get, well, barely a slap on the wrist.

Two cases that came through Fayette Circuit Court last week rubbed salt in the wounds left by the light sentences received by former airport director Michael Gobb and his three lieutenants.

We understand that different judges will inevitably take different approaches to sentencing. Also, the criminal charges against the airport executives involved much less money than the $500,000 identified by a state audit as inappropriate or unexplained expenses, and the former execs also paid restitution.

Still, it's impossible not to be struck by the disparity.

Fayette Circuit Judge James Ishmael sent former Wildcat Ed Davender and a former National City Bank employee to prison for their crimes while Circuit Judge Pamela Goodwine let the airport executives off without any prison time.

Only one of them, Gobb, received so much as probation.

(Ishmael did give the assistant branch bank manager a few hours to tell her 9-year-old daughter she would be going away.)

This sentencing gap will only reinforce the perception that justice was not done in the white-collar heist committed at the airport.

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