A Kearns man who admitted participating in a gang-related drive-by shooting was given probation Monday after spending 90 days at the Utah State Prison.
Trentin M. Giles, 19, was given two zero-to-five-year sentences for his guilty pleas to aggravated assault. Giles was driving a vehicle and picked up Benny Lee Gardner, 18, on Oct. 15. Gardner fired a shotgun at four people on the sidewalk, hitting two of them.Third District Judge Michael Murphy also imposed a three-year gang enhancement to Giles' sentence. He agreed, however, to stay the prison terms and put Giles on probation for 36 months. But Murphy warned him to obey all terms of probation or he would return to prison.
"I've really learned my lesson," Giles told the judge. "I see how hard it is out there . . . and I don't think I belong."
But Murphy, who sent Giles to the prison's diagnostic unit for a 90-day evaluation, balked at his assessment.
"You understand you didn't see anything hard at all at the 90-day diagnostic center compared to the real prison," he said.
Murphy ordered Giles to pay a $1,250 fine and nearly $3,300 in restitution to the wounded victims. He also ordered Giles to spend the rest of the week in jail "to begin thinking about what you're going to be doing."
The judge also forbade Giles from going to the Kearns area.
In previous hearings, attorneys argued that Gardner, Giles and Gary Archibald have been continuously assaulted by members of the Tongan Crips Gang for several years. The shooting was in retaliation for years of torment, they said.
Gardner is currently serving two zero-to-five-year sentences at the Point of the Mountain. Archibald, a passenger in the vehicle, was given 36 months probation.