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The I-5 Strangler

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From the Stockton Record:

The so-called I-5 Stranger, Roger Reece Kibbe, pleaded guilty today to murdering and raping six women under a deal that will send him to prison for the rest of his life.

Kibbe is 70, so the three available sentences for first-degree murder in California -- death, life without parole, and 25-to-life -- are all the same as a practical matter. He would leave prison when he dies of natural causes under any of these sentences, given the length of death penalty appeals and the success of the opposition in blocking the reforms that would speed them up.

When researchers do studies on sentencing "disparities" and fail to include the age of the defendant in their models, this case will show up as disparate sentence. This will assist in much wailing about how unfair the death penalty is, when a serial killer such as Kibbe does not get the death penalty and others who only killed one victim do. Yet it makes sense and is obviously neither invidious discrimination nor arbitrary when you look at the individual case.

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That's, of course, assuming that capital murderers have some sort of right to cosmic fairness as among capital murderers generally.

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