LANSING — The Michigan Supreme Court declined to hear the separate appeals of two area murderers in decisions issued Nov. 2.

Jared Chance

Jared Chance

Holland native Jared Chance, 32, was given what is effectively a life sentence after a Kent County jury convicted him in 2019 of the murder and mutilation of his acquaintance, Ashley Young.

Young’s torso and limbs were found in Chance’s Grand Rapids apartment. His parents, who live in Holland, were also prosecuted for helping Chance transport a saw and other items between Grand Rapids and Holland.

Young graduated from Grand Haven High School.

Chance appealed a January state Court of Appeals decision that affirmed his conviction and sentence, but Michigan’s highest court declined to hear the case, saying the justices were “not persuaded that the questions presented should be reviewed by this court.”

In his appeal of his conviction and sentence, Chance had previously argued the jury should have been given the option to come to an involuntary manslaughter verdict. Chance also appealed the judge’s sentence because it exceeded the recommended sentencing of 22.5 to 75 years for second-degree murder. The appeals court rejected Chance’s arguments.

“The guidelines do not take into effect the level of brutality involved in this matter, and your lack of compassion and total lack of remorse,” said Judge Mark Trusock at Chance’s sentencing hearing. “Unfortunately, I have been doing this type of work for 34 years. I’ve been on the bench for 13 years. I personally have been involved in over 200 murder or death cases. This is without question the worst case that I have ever been involved in.”

Chance is serving his 100- to-200-year sentence in the state’s Saginaw Correctional Facility, where his earliest release date is Dec. 1, 2118, when Chance would be 129 years old.

Port Sheldon man Michael McNeal was convicted by an Ottawa County jury in 2019 of murdering his wife, Sherri McNeal. On July 24, 2018, McNeal shot and killed his wife and then shot himself with the same rifle, surviving the attempted suicide while suffering facial injuries. The jury found McNeal guilty of second-degree murder and a judge sentenced him to serve 47-77 years in prison.

The Michigan Court of Appeals, in a June 17 decision, upheld McNeal’s conviction and sentence. McNeal had complained of improper jury instructions regarding their verdict options and too-harsh sentencing. The judge had drawn on McNeal’s previous history of domestic violence in a prior marriage and skepticism about McNeal’s remorse as part of his reasoning for imposing a lengthy prison sentence.

The Michigan Supreme Court declined to hear McNeal’s appeal of the appellate decision, saying the court was “not persuaded” the questions raised by McNeal warranted the court’s review.

McNeal, 58, is incarcerated at the state’s G. Robert Cotton Correctional Facility in Jackson. His earliest release date is in 2065, when McNeal would be 102.

(1) comment

Rottweiler

Just a shame we can’t hang them both

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