Why didn’t Klunder serve full sentence?

Michael Klunder
Michael Klunder

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MASON CITY, IA-It’s been two full days since police say 15-year-old Kathlynn Shepard was abducted by a north Iowa native – 42-year-old Michael Klunder.

He was found dead at a home near Dayton, Iowa, just hours after two girls were abducted on Monday.
We told you last night that Klunder has quite the criminal record both in Cerro Gordo and Floyd counties.

He was sentenced in kidnapping cases in both areas in 1992.
And while he was sentenced to 41 years in prison – he only served about 18 of those.
Now, we’re finding out why that happened.

He accepted a plea deal to avoid trial and was sentenced on lesser kidnapping charges.
Our criminal justice system is pretty complex and there’s a couple different things that can happen once a criminal is arrested or charged with a crime to reduce the amount of time they serve

First:
There’s something called credit for time served.
That’s applied for people who are in jail as their case works through the system.
They get credit for the amount of time spent in jail that cuts down their sentence later.
The second option comes after a criminal is sentenced.
It’s called “good time.”..this is what Klunder would likely have gotten.
According to attorneys we talked with, “good time” is applied in cases that are not forceable felonies and gives the criminal time off their sentence for good behavior.

The ratio used varies from each county or state prison system.

“The purpose is to rehabilitate these people and if you teach people if they are good, then they get a reward, it’s not such a bad lesson to learn,” said Attorney Joel Yunek.

Iowa actually has a pretty low rate when it comes to re-peat offenders.
The hope is that these criminals learn their lesson.

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