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Judge issues stay of Walmart assault sentence

A state appeals court judge has issued a stay of the prison term imposed on Jacquetta Walker of Batavia, the woman recently sentenced to five years in jail for assaulting a 70-year-old Walmart employee.  A jury convicted Simmons of second-degree assault for punching Grace Suozzi in the face last Christmas Eve when Suozzi asked Simmons for her receipt.  She can be released from prison if she posts $50,000 bail or bond. 

Defense attorneys argued that Simmons's sentence was too harsh for a first-time felon. Simmons, who had no prior criminal history, was subject to a harsher penalty under New York's "Granny Law." 

The sentence is being appealed.  Simmons could be free for six months until a final ruling is issued. At the time of sentencing earlier this month, she was eight months pregnant.


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