Best Defender Bytes:

August 31, 2011

Alleged Gang Member Charged with Murder in Death of Pizza Deliveryman

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — Tags: , , — fayarfa @ 1:51 pm

LOS ANGELES – An alleged teen gang member is scheduled to be arraigned on Wednesday on murder in the Aug. 7 slaying of a 25-year-old pizza deliveryman in Silver Lake, the District Attorney’s office announced.

Jose Beltran, 18 (dob 5-5-93), is due to be arraigned at the Foltz Criminal Justice Center, Department 30, sometime after 8:30 a.m. Wednesday. He was charged Monday in case BA388228 with one count of murder and one count of shooting at an occupied motor vehicle with gun and gang allegations, said Deputy District Attorney Amy Ashvanian with the Hardcore Gang Division. Prosecutors will be asked that bail be set at $2 million.

Beltran is suspected of fatally shooting Juan Vazquez shortly after 5 a.m. as Vazquez was driving co-workers home from work. The shooting occurred in the 1400 block of Silver Lake Boulevard. Beltran was arrested Aug. 19 by Los Angeles police on suspicion of driving with a loaded firearm.

If convicted, he faces more than 50 years to life in prison.


Filed under: California Defense Attorney — Tags: , , — fayarfa @ 1:50 pm

SANTA ANA - An office manager will be arraigned Monday for defrauding her employer out of $284,000 by writing checks to herself and stealing petty cash payments. Veronica Martinez, 55, La Habra, is charged with 51 felony counts of forgery, 51 felony counts of falsifying records, and one felony count of grand theft with sentencing enhancements and allegations for loss over $100,000, aggravated white collar crime over $100,000, and property damage over $65,000. If convicted, she faces a sentence ranging from probation up to 73 years in state prison. Martinez is being held on $150,000 bail and must prove the money is from a legal and legitimate source before posting bond. The La Habra Police Department investigated this case and arrested Martinez yesterday, Aug. 25, 2011. She is expected to be arraigned Monday, Aug. 29, 2011, at 10:00 a.m. in Department CJ-1, Central Jail, Santa Ana.

Martinez is accused of working as an office manager for the La Habra Fence Company and had access to all company cash, checks, and financial bookkeeping records. She is also accused of being solely responsible for receiving and recording petty cash payments. Between April 2004 and September 2009, Martinez is accused of stealing over $284,000 from the business.

The defendant is accused of writing company checks to herself and then falsely recording in the financial books that the checks had been paid to other payees, including vendors and bills.  She is also accused of stealing petty cash payments and failing to record that the payments had been made in an effort to hide her theft.

In early 2010, a company employee became suspicious after giving Martinez petty cash


Filed under: California Defense Attorney — Tags: , , , — fayarfa @ 1:48 pm

SANTA ANA- An actor was convicted today of the 1990 Christmas Eve gang rape of a woman who was out walking her dog. Joseph Hyungmin Son, 40, was found guilty by a jury of one felony count of torture. Son was charged Oct. 1, 2008, with numerous felony counts of sexual offenses, but People determined that these charges could not be pursued because the statute of limitations had run. He faces a maximum sentence of 15 years to life in state prison at his sentencing Sept. 9, 2011, in Department C-45, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana. The victim is expected to make a victim impact statement at the hearing.

Co-defendant Santiago Lopez Gaitan, 40, San Antonio, TX, pleaded guilty Jan. 14, 2011, to one felony count each of kidnapping, sodomy by force in concert, rape in concert, forcible oral copulation, and forcible rape with a sentencing enhancement for committing rape while armed with a firearm. He was sentenced Jan. 28, 2011, to 17 years and four months in state prison.

On Dec. 24, 1990, at about 12:30 a.m., Jane Doe was walking back to her apartment alone with her dog after going to look at Christmas lights with a relative and friend. As she was walking with her purse and her dog in hand, Son distracted Jane Doe by asking for directions and pretending he was lost. Son and Gaitan forcibly dragged Jane Doe to their car, threw her in the back, and drove away. Jane Doe’s purse was later retrieved at the scene, but her dog was never found.

While driving to Huntington Beach, Son and Gaitan told her they were driving to Compton, pistol whipped her, and threatened to kill her repeatedly. Son repeatedly raped, sodomized, and forced Jane Doe to orally copulate him in the back of the car. He also penetrated her vagina with a firearm. Gaitan raped Jane Doe and forced her to orally copulate him. Son threatened to kill the victim and counted the bullets in the gun out loud, as Jane Doe pleaded for her life.


August 30, 2011

Ex-Marine Convicted of Rape-Attempted Murder of Hawthorne Woman

Filed under: Los Angeles Criminal attorney — Tags: , , — fayarfa @ 5:23 pm

LOS ANGELES – An ex-Marine was found guilty today of the 2009 rape and attempted murder of a 69-year-old woman who was collecting cans from trash bins in the Hawthorne area, the District Attorney’s office announced.

The jury deliberated one day before finding Gary Devaughn Labon, 50, guilty of one count each of rape, attempted first-degree murder and kidnapping for rape, said Deputy District Attorney Robin Allen with the Elder Abuse Section. The jury also found true the special allegations of kidnapping during a rape and causing great bodily injury.

Labon faces life in prison when he returns to Airport Superior Court on Oct. 12 for sentencing by Judge Kathryn Soloranzo.

The victim, who was 69 at the time, was riding her bicycle and collecting cans from trash bins when she was attacked by Labon, who raped and brutally beat her. The attack occurred on Sept. 18, 2009, in the 12900 block of Jefferson Avenue.

The victim, who was hospitalized in a coma at the time, still suffers as a result of the attack.


Filed under: California Defense Attorney — Tags: , , — fayarfa @ 5:21 pm

SANTA ANA - The Orange County District Attorney’s office has filed an amended complaint charging a mother with murder for pushing her 7-month-old baby from the fourth story of a hospital parking structure. Sonia Hermosillo, 31, La Habra, is now charged with one felony count of murder and one felony count of assault on a child with force likely to produce great bodily injury resulting in death. If convicted, she faces a maximum sentence of 25 years to life in state prison. Hermosillo was in court today for an arraignment and is being held on $1 million bail, and she is also subject to a no-bail Customs and Immigration Enforcement hold. She is scheduled to be arraigned on the new charges tomorrow, Thursday, Aug. 25, 2011, at 10:00 a.m. in Department CJ-1, Central Jail, Santa Ana.

On Aug. 22, 2011, Hermosillo is accused of driving her 7-month-old son, Baby Noe, to the Children’s Hospital of Orange County (CHOC) and parking her car on the fourth floor of a parking structure. The baby suffered medical conditions that required him to be treated at CHOC regularly, but he did not have a scheduled appointment that day. The victim wore a helmet on his head for one of his medical conditions.

At approximately 6:20 p.m., Hermosillo is accused of removing the victim’s helmet and pushing her baby from the parking structure with the intention of murdering him with the four-story fall. Hermosillo is accused of then walking inside the hospital, validating her parking, and fleeing the scene.

A witness who saw the baby falling through the air called 911 and the Orange Police Department (OPD), who is investigating this case, responded to the scene. Baby Noe was transported to the trauma center at the University of California, Irvine Medical Center.

OPD obtained a license plate number from a vehicle and matched it to an address in La Habra. The La Habra Police Department (LHPD) and OPD began to communicate and it was determined that Hermosillo’s husband had just called LHPD to report the defendant and his son missing.

At approximately 10:15 p.m., Hermosillo is accused of driving past CHOC on Main Street and was observed by an OPD officer. She was arrested at the scene.

Baby Noe remained in critical condition until today, Aug. 24, 2011, when he was pronounced dead at 9:25 a.m. due to the injuries.

The defendant is married and has two other children.


Filed under: California Defense Attorney — Tags: , , , — fayarfa @ 5:19 pm

NEWPORT BEACH - A third striker parolee was sentenced today to 22 years in state prison for robbing of a woman while she was caring for six children in her home. Hung Trong Do, 34, Stanton, pleaded guilty to the court May 13, 2011, to one felony count each of first degree robbery, first degree residential burglary, possession of a firearm by a felon, and two counts of assault with a semiautomatic firearm. Do admitted the sentencing enhancement for the personal use of a firearm.  The defendant is a third striker with two prior strike convictions for a 1996 attempted murder and a 2008 residential burglary and has a prior prison conviction for possession of a firearm in 2005.

At approximately 12:00 p.m. on June 3, 2009, Do broke into the Irvine home of Jane Doe, where the victim ran a daycare for six children ranging in age from 6 months to 3 years old. Jane Doe was sitting on the couch in the living room feeding baby John Doe. There were five other children in the room.

Do entered the home through the garage door into the living room, pointed a loaded .40 caliber semiautomatic firearm at Jane Doe’s head, and demanded money. He pressed the gun barrel into the back of her neck while the victim pleaded with the defendant to not harm the children. Do grabbed Jane Doe by the collar of her shirt and walked her to the dining room area while she was holding baby John Doe in her arms. Do forced Jane Doe to take money out of her purse and stole $100 from her.

When Jane Doe’s husband arrived home during the robbery, Do pointed the gun and began arguing with him. Jane Doe managed to get to the phone in the dining room and call 911. Do fled the scene.

The Irvine Police Department found Do loitering in a nearby apartment complex. The police recovered the loaded .40 caliber semiautomatic firearm in some nearby bushes after being alerted to the weapon by a police K9.

August 29, 2011


Filed under: California Defense Attorney — Tags: , , — fayarfa @ 5:42 pm

*Defendant previously convicted for stealing over $40,000 by failing to pay for new Mercedes Benz and defrauding hotels

SANTA ANA - A former congressional candidate was sentenced today to six years and eight months in state prison after admitting that she violated probation for stealing the identity of one of her prior victims.  Delecia Holt, 49, formerly of Aliso Viejo, was sentenced on Jan. 21, 2010, to five years of probation, 708 days in jail, and was ordered to pay over $40,700 in restitution for defrauding Orange County hotels and stealing a Mercedes Benz from a local car dealership.

Probation Violation
Commissioner Vickie Hix found today that Holt violated her probation by stealing the identity of one of her original victims, an escrow company. The defendant prepared a federal tax return on behalf of the company for the 2009 tax year, during which time she was in Orange County Jail on the original case.  She also opened up multiple bank accounts in direct violation of the court’s orders while she was on probation.

Original Case
Holt was found guilty by a jury Dec. 22, 2009, of seven felony counts of writing non-sufficient fund checks, one felony count each of grand theft, and defrauding an innkeeper by non-payment.

In July 2005, Holt went to a Mercedes Benz dealership in Orange County and wrote a bad check for just under $13,000 as a down payment for a $32,000 car. She left the dealership lot in the car and never made any legitimate payments for the vehicle. Holt’s account, from which the $13,000 down payment check was written, had insufficient funds and the dealership never received any monthly payments.



Filed under: California Defense Attorney — Tags: , — fayarfa @ 5:39 pm

SANTA ANA - A man was sentenced today to eight years in state prison for committing 13 robberies inside banks located primarily in Orange County grocery stores. David Andrew Camp, 52, Laguna Niguel, pleaded guilty to 13 felony counts of second degree robbery. The defendant will not receive credit for time served toward his eight years prison sentence for the year and nine months that he has been in custody. Camp has also been ordered to pay over $26,000 in restitution.

Between Nov. 30, 2009, and Feb. 9, 2010, Camp committed 13 bank robberies in Orange County. The robberies occurred at 13 different locations in the cities of Aliso Viejo, Costa Mesa, Dana Point, Irvine, Laguna Hills, Laguna Niguel, Laguna Woods, Lake Forest, and San Juan Capistrano. The bank chains included California Bank & Trust, Chase, Bank of America, FirstBank, Home Savings Bank, NuVision Federal Credit Union, Pacific Western Bank, US Bank, Wachovia, and Wells Fargo.

The defendant entered banks, many of which were located in grocery stores, often wearing a hat and sunglasses in an effort to disguise his identity. He handed a demand note to a bank teller at each location and verbally instructed them to give him only large bills and not to hide any dye packs.  After robbing the bank tellers, Camp fled the scene. There were no weapons displayed in any of the robberies.

The defendant was previously dubbed the “Blue Note Bandit” by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Family members of the defendant contacted law enforcement after recognizing Camp from media coverage of the robberies.  Following an investigation, Camp was arrested Feb. 17, 2010, by the Orange County Sheriff’s Department.

Suspect Indicted in Quadruple Hollywood Homicide

Filed under: Los Angeles Criminal attorney — Tags: , , — fayarfa @ 5:27 pm

LOS ANGELES – A superceding Grand Jury indictment unsealed today charges Alberd Tersargsyan with the murders of three family members and a woman not related to the family, the District Attorney’s office announced.

Tersargsyan, 65 (7-7-46), pleaded not guilty before Los Angeles Superior Court Judge George Lomeli in case BA 382886. Tersargsyan, who was ordered held without bail, returns to court on Oct. 17 for a pretrial hearing in Department 100, said Deputy District Attorneys Alan Jackson and Amy Ashvanian.

The four-count murder indictment was returned Aug. 26 by the Grand Jury. It charges Tersargsyan with the March 26, 2010, murder of Karine Hokobyan. The 38-year-old victim had just returned home about 8 p.m. and parked her car near her apartment on Lexington Avenue in Hollywood when she was fatally shot while still in her car.

The indictment also charges Tersargsyan him with the murders of Hokobyan’s 43-year-old husband, Khachik Safaryan, and the couple’s 8-year-old daughter, Lusine Safaryan. Their bodies were discovered fatally shot in the family’s Hollywood apartment on Dec. 11, 2008.

The indictment also charges Tersargsyan with the sniper-style shooting of Julie Kates on March 11, 2010, on Sunset Boulevard. She allegedly was murdered because the defendant thought the woman acquaintance stole a DVD from him.

The indictment alleges the special circumstances of lying in wait, multiple murders and murder of a witness, Lusine Safaryan. Prosecutors will decide later whether to seek the death penalty.

Tersargsyan, who was initially thought to be in his 70s, was first charged in April 2010 with Hokobyan’s murder. That case, which was later amended, will be dismissed.

August 26, 2011


Filed under: California Defense Attorney — Tags: , , — fayarfa @ 5:07 pm

FULLERTON - A Yorba Linda man was convicted today of raping three women, two of whom he met on MySpace. Jason Ara Erpinar, 22, pleaded guilty today to two felony counts of rape by intoxication and one felony count of forcible rape. He is expected to be sentenced to 15 years in state prison at his sentencing Wednesday, Aug. 24, 2011, at 3:30 p.m. in Department N-13, North Justice Center, Fullerton. Some of the victims in this case are expected to give victim impact statements at the sentencing hearing.

On March 26, 2008, Erpinar invited 22-year-old Jane Doe #2 on a date after meeting her on the social networking website, MySpace. He went with the victim to two Orange County parks and consumed alcohol with her, and the victim became severely intoxicated. Erpinar drove Jane Doe #2 to a Newport Beach hotel and raped her while she was unable to resist due to alcohol intoxication. When Jane Doe #2 woke up the following morning, she had a cracked tooth and several scrapes to her face. The victim went to the hospital and reported the case to the Newport Beach Police Department. A criminal case could not be filed due to a lack of sufficient evidence at that time.

Erpinar met 18-year-old Jane Doe #1 on MySpace. He contacted the victim by phone and e-mail and invited her to a house party in La Habra on March 7, 2009. At the party, Jane Doe #1 became severely intoxicated due to alcohol consumption and began to vomit. Erpinar raped her on the floor of a bedroom while she was unable to resist due to alcohol intoxication. Jane Doe #1 reported the rape the next day to the La Habra Police Department (LHPD).

During the investigation by LHPD, Erpinar’s ex-girlfriend, Jane Doe #3, was contacted. Erpinar was physically abusive toward Jane Doe #3 while they were in a dating relationship when she was 17 years old. Between August 2006 and October 2007, he forcibly raped her.

The three victims do not know each other.

Older Posts »

Powered by WordPress