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Judge denies request from Nancy Kerrigan's brother to go back to jail

Bizuayehu Tesfaye / AP, file

Mark Kerrigan sits in court during his trial at Middlesex District Court in Woburn, Mass., on May 18, 2011.

Updated 11:27 a.m. ET: A Massachusetts judge has denied a request by the brother of Olympic figure skater Nancy Kerrigan that he be sent back to jail to finish his sentence on an assault and battery conviction in connection with the death of their 70-year-old father.

Mark Kerrigan was released early from a county jail on July 27. He was serving 2 1/2 years following his May 2011 conviction.

His lawyers told Middlesex Superior Court Judge Kathe Tuttman the terms of his probation were too expensive and time consuming. Kerrigan's probation conditions included alcohol counseling, anger management classes and mental health counseling.

He is not accused of violating probation but had asked to return to jail to serve the remaining four months of his sentence.

"It is not up to Mr. Kerrigan to decide that he wants to serve a sentence rather than serve probation," Tuttman said after denying Kerrigan's request.

She said he could talk to the district attorney about any financial issues and return to court if nothing can be worked out. 

May 17, 2011: Former Olympic figure skater Nancy Kerrigan continues to support her brother, who is accused of murdering their father. NBC's Mara Schiavocampo reports.

Before the hearing, Middlesex District Attorney's office spokeswoman Jessica Venezia Pastore said prosecutors expected Tuttman would determine "whether it is in the best interests of the community for Kerrigan to be returned to jail and then subsequently released without supervision or to be ordered to comply with the conditions of probation that the sentencing judge imposed."

Kerrigan was joined by his family during the 20-minute hearing, but his sister was not present.

Kerrigan's trial lawyer, Janice Bassil, did not return a phone call or an email seeking comment. A Kerrigan family spokeswoman could not be reached.

October 2010: Nancy Kerrigan stands up for those who can't

Heart failure
Prosecutors said Kerrigan caused his father's death while in a drunken rage at the family's home in Stoneham, north of Boston, on Jan. 24, 2010. They said he put his hands around 70-year-old Daniel Kerrigan's neck with such force that he broke cartilage in his larynx and triggered heart failure.

Jan. 26, 2010: Police say skater Nancy Kerrigan's father died after an altercation with her brother at the family's Massachusetts home. The brother, Daniel Kerrigan, has been charged with assault. NBC's Jeff Rossen reports.

Mark Kerrigan was acquitted of involuntary manslaughter. He received the maximum prison sentence on the assault and battery charge despite tearful pleas for leniency from relatives including his younger sister, Nancy, who won a bronze medal at the 1992 Olympics in Albertville, France, and a silver at the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway.

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