Yesterday was the long awaited trial date for the notorious Ed Kramer, and it was a bit of an anticlimax– after avoiding charges of child molestation for over a decade, he entered the type of guilty plea that does not admit guilt on three of six counts, and was sentenced to five years in jail. However, because he had already served 26 months in the Gwinnett County Jail, and because of the medical conditions that helped him avoid standing trial for so long, the actual sentence was 34 months of house arrest. Under the nine-condition agreement, District Attorney Danny Porter recommended concurrent sentences of 20 years to serve five for each count. Because of 26 months previously served in the Gwinnett County jail and while incarcerated in Connecticut, Kramer will actually serve 34 months of house arrest.
While to many this seemed like no victory at all, assistant DA Danny Porter says Kramer will be scrutinized and must serve every term of his sentence. These are terms that Porter feels Kramer will have a hard time living up to.
“We wanted a resolution of the case and the victims wanted a resolution of the case and they agreed to the recommendations.” Under the court’s nine-condition agreement, if the 52-year-old Kramer violates even a single term he could land back in prison for up to 60 years. Those include failing to pay each victim a $100K restitution, violating his house arrest, or coming in contact with any person under the age of 16. “I believe he’ll violate his probation and we’ll have him in prison eventually,” said Porter, who has been on the Kramer case since 2005. “I think he’ll most likely try and figure out a way to come in contact with children, and that’s where I’ll get him.”
In other words, if Kramer slips up, he’ll have to serve the rest of his sentence in an actual jail. A story in Atlanta Magazine has more of the thinking behind the plea bargain.
Though he was confident of a conviction, Porter says he was worried that, depending on the judge’s sentence, Kramer could have paroled early and then been more or less free to roam. Under this plea deal, Kramer will be on strict probation for the remaining fifteen years of his sentence, during which time he will not be allowed to leave the county and will be under close supervision. Porter feels that the deal he brokered is the best possible outcome.
Given the extensive cat and mouse game Kramer played with legal authorities for years and years—and the litany of lawsuits and nuisance filings that he placed to make his incarceration very expensive—this doesn’t seem very conclusive. However, let’s just keep our fingers crossed—and our surveillance equipment trained firmly on chez Kramer.
And here’s a local news report with video of the back of Kramer’s head.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.