Appellate Court Upholds Tkachik Sentence
March 4, 2014 — The Indiana Court of Appeals rejected claims by a 26-year-old Hobart man who admitted to his role in the death of a two-year-old Portage girl in 2009, that the 40-year sentence he received was too severe.
Timothy Tkachik pleaded guilty in 2010 to neglect of a dependent in Jada Justice’s beating death. His former girlfriend, Engelica Castillo, is currently serving a 65-year prison sentence for the child’s death.
Tkachik claims that the trial court should have considered the accidental nature of Jada’s death to be a mitigating factor. But the Appeals Court judges ruled that Tkachik did not raise this claim at his sentencing.
The appellate court ruled that valid aggravating factors found by the local judge warranted an enhanced sentence and that the trial court did not abuse its discretion in sentencing Tkachik.