Repeat Offender Handed Life Sentence

Ohio County Circuit Judge James Mazzone sentenced David McDonald to life in prison with the possibility of parole Wednesday under the state’s recidivism act.

Under the act’s statutes, the 53-year-old McDonald would be required to serve at least 15 years of a life sentence prior to appearing before the state parole board for consideration of his release. McDonald would remain on parole for life as well, if released.

As a part of the agreement McDonald entered into with the state prior to sentencing Wednesday, however, he may seek to have his sentence reduced after serving 10 years in prison. The judge who hears that case is under no obligation to reduce McDonald’s prison time from 15 years.

McDonald has numerous felony convictions dating back to the 1980s for crimes including armed robbery, breaking and entering and drug distribution, among others.

An Ohio County jury found him guilty in July of failing to register as a lifetime sex offender. Following that conviction, Ohio County Assistant Prosecutor Brian Gaphery filed recidivism action with the state seeking life in prison for McDonald.

A trial was set to commence Thursday to determine if McDonald was the same individual who the state alleged was convicted of committing those crimes. McDonald opted to appear in court with his attorney Wednesday, however, accept the state’s agreement and voluntarily admit his identity.

If the case had proceeded to trial, the state was anticipated to present McDonald’s Social Security number and fingerprint records to a jury, as well as testimony from circuit court clerks in counties where he was convicted.