SHOSHONE, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) — A Shoshone man who fatally shot his formerly estranged daughter last year was almost sentenced to prison Friday.
Judge Ned C. Williamson decided to place Jonathan Pugh on a rider program after hearing his testimony, and letters supporting his character and the good things Pugh had done in recent years for the community of Shoshone.
Pugh fatally shot his estranged daughter in the head during an altercation in May and was sentenced for voluntary manslaughter Friday.
Pugh was able to make an emotional plea to the judge as he faced a maximum of 10 years in prison.
In his plea, Pugh claimed responsibility for his crime, but said he would rather be an asset to the community than an expense.
Judge Williamson entered the court planning to sentence Pugh to a year and a half in prison, but after hearing what was presented, excused himself and later returned with a new decision.
Williamson sentenced Pugh to complete a year of the Department of Correction rider program, which is an alternative placement center for him to get the necessary counseling and rehabilitation.
The prosecutor said that he believes without some form of treatment, he worried about his client's safety because of the weight he carries over what he did. His attorney said it’s a good thing he’s going to treatment, but they’re upset he has to do it somewhere not in the Magic Valley.
After Pugh completes the rider program, the judge will determine Pugh's case and decide if he goes on parole or to prison.