Full episode
134: We Didn’t
Act Four

Saying No For 75 Years

Journalist Steve Bogira tells the story of Vincent Bogan, who said "no" to something once—a decade ago, when he was 21—and now has to live with that one decisive act. Bogan was arrested and charged with 17 counts of armed robbery. He was offered a 25-year sentence if he pled guilty to all 17 counts. But he refused this plea-bargain arrangement. He ended up losing four cases, sentenced to 75 years in prison. Partly this is a story about what he says about that one decision he made a decade ago to refuse the plea bargain. Partly it's about how the courts punish people who decide to go to trial—tying up the courts—with sentences of extra severity. (19 minutes)