Former Lexington Co. Sheriff signs new plea deal

Former Lexington Co. Sheriff signs new plea deal

COLUMBIA, SC (WTOC)

Former Lexington County Sheriff, James Metts, signed a new plea deal over the weekend; one week after a separate deal in his federal bribery case was rejected by a judge.

The old plea deal would have let Metts plead guilty to one count and receive three years probation.

This new deal, which a judge has not ruled on, makes no sentence recommendation.

Although the charge carries a possible 10-year prison sentence, former U.S. Attorney, Pete Strom says it is unlikely that Metts' will serve that length of time.

"What the judge seemed to indicate was something between 10, 14, and 16 months, at the last hearing. What I see in cases like this, typically, is a sentence of a year and a day, and you say, 'why a year and a day?' Well, under the federal sentencing statutes, if you get more than a year, then you get 'good time'. So, a year and a day turns into 10 months. A year; you would serve the whole 12 months."

Strom says Metts could be in front of a judge to plead guilty as early as January.

His sentence, under federal guidelines, would then be handed down in March.

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