Man who robbed WWII veteran sentenced to 14 years in prison

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When Danny Miller stood in court to hear his fate there was a man missing-- an 89 year old veteran named Robert Christiansen. (KFSN)

A World War II veteran who was robbed by a smooth talking thief, did not live long enough to see justice served but he was in a Fresno County Judge's thoughts during the sentencing of Danny Miller.

When Danny Miller, 20, stood in court to hear his fate, there was a man missing - an 89-year-old veteran named Robert Christiansen who had been waiting for this day and ultimately died waiting for justice.

In July, Christiansen said Miller charmed his way into his home and used his pregnant wife to distract him while he loaded a pillow case up with thousands of dollars in cash and jewelry.

Christiansen had just buried his wife and at the time, he figured he was targeted through her obituary.

"He's out picking on old people that their husbands or wives are passing on," Christiansen said in August, "you're at the worst of life right then."

Miller was arrested less than 72 hours later. Looking back at the crime, his attorney Annette Smurr said her client was not in his right mind. He was high on meth and she argued for a light sentence-- no prison time due to his young age, the four kids he would leave behind and the loss of a baby.

Smurr said, "At the time he was incarcerated, his wife was pregnant-- that baby was born while he was in custody and died hours later."

Miller followed up with an apology, "I'd like to apologize your honor, to the victim's family-- I'd like to say, I'm sorry -- I didn't realize what I was doing."

It was not enough. Miller was already on felony probation and during the home invasion, Christiansen's arm was swatted and cut in a struggle with Miller.

Judge Brian Alvarez said, "unfortunately, Mr. Christiansen did not live long enough to see his justice."

He said Miller is a danger to society and sentenced him to 14 years in prison.

Christiansen was a war veteran and a Merchant Marine who served in the Pacific. In his final days, he found comfort in knowing Miller was behind bars.

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