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Guidelines for sentencing?

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recently my friend got sentenced for simple assult and disorderly conduct(he got into a bar fight, he used a cue stick to beat this guy up) he got 18 to 36 months concurent. I just read in a local paper that someone just got sentenced to 6 to 12 months couple hundred dollar fine probation and community service for stabbing this guy more than once. Isn't there some guideline to follow so that judges don't abuse their power and if not what can be done because I don't feel that what was done is just.

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