SHELL LAKE– The consensus during the sentencing of Dakota Gates, 22, of Spooner on Wednesday, April 18, was that prison was not the best option for him.
But it seemed to be the only option, and Circuit Judge John Anderson sentenced him to what will amount to a total of four years in prison, with credit for the 519 days he has been in jail, followed by three years of extended supervision for exposing a child to harmful material, party to burglary, and battery to a prisoner.
His attorney, Daniel Chapman, said he and the defendant knew Gates had to go to prison but he told the court that Gates had multiple mental health issues and is “lower functioning.” He suggested that Gates will need treatment in a confined setting when he gets out of prison.
The judge agreed that prison may not be the best alternative for Gates but said when he “goes off the rails,” he “becomes a bit dangerous.”
The sentencing followed revocation of probation in three separate cases following new charges on October 18 of intentionally causing harm to a child, battery to a law officer, failing to comply with an officer while in custody, and resisting or obstructing an officer. He is to be sentenced on those in May.
For the probation revocation on the earlier charges, Anderson sentenced Gates to one year in prison and one year supervision for sexting and sending sexual photos to a 13-year-old girl when he was 17 in 2015; two years in prison and three of supervision for his part in the burglary of iPlay in Spooner in 2017; and four years prison and three of supervision for battery to a prisoner when he got into a fight with another inmate after a card game in the Washburn County Jail.
Because the sentences will be served concurrently, the total time will be four years prison and three years supervision.
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