Updated:COBB COUNTY, Ga. —
The family of the man who threatened a judge was hoping he'd be able to stay out of prison. But that's not going to happen. He will serve time.
James Satterfield, 58, didn't like the way his 2013 divorce turned out, but a letter he wrote to the Cobb County judge prompted sheriff's deputies to immediately launch a search for him.
Satterfield addressed the letter to Judge Reuben Green's wife, threatening to kill both of them and then cook and eat the couple's two young children.
Was it a real threat? Or ramblings from a mentally ill man who otherwise had no criminal record? Experts testified it was the latter.
“It was my opinion he was not responsible, based on a delusional compulsion,” said psychologist Dr. Kevin Richards.
Satterfield's family, including the woman he divorced, testified they believed he was not a real threat.
“He's just angry and obviously he's depressed and sad and obviously he doesn't know how to release that,” said Satterfield’s sister Teresa Garmin.
Satterfield said nothing; neither did Judge Green, who had testified previously. But prosecutors did, asking for the maximum 25 years in prison. They said Satterfield had given his ex-wife his money, moved out of his home and had a gun.
“He was preparing to act on the letter. Thank God the sheriff's deputies found him in time,” said Chief Assistant District Attorney Don Geary.
Satterfield’s attorneys argued he should be spared prison time. They said he should receive probation and mental health treatment.
Satterfield was sentenced to eight years in prison followed by two years probation.