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October 20, 2011

Former MLB Player Pleads in Auto Theft Case

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — Tags: , , , — fayarfa @ 2:09 am

SAN FERNANDO – Former New York Mets star Lenny Dykstra pleaded no contest today to three counts of grand theft auto and filing a false financial statement and admitted the loss was more than $100,000, the District Attorney’s office announced.

Dykstra, 48, entered his plea before Judge Cynthia Ulfig, who released him pending sentencing on Jan. 20, 2012, said Deputy District Attorney Alex Karkanen with the Auto Insurance Fraud Division. As part of the plea, Dykstra faces up to four years in state prison, Karkanen said.

Beginning in January, Dykstra and two co-defendants tried to lease various high-end automobiles from several area dealerships by providing fraudulent information and claiming credit through a phony business, Home Free Systems.

At two dealerships, Dykstra and Robert Hymers, 27, his accountant, provided information from a man they claimed was a co-signer but who had not authorized his name to be used. The leases were not approved.

However, at a San Fernando Valley auto dealer, Dykstra, Hymers and a third defendant, Christopher Gavanis, 30, a friend of Dykstra’s, were able to drive off with three cars by providing fraudulent information to the dealer.

When LAPD detectives investigating the case executed a search warrant at his Encino home on April 14, the day he was arrested, they allegedly found cocaine and Ecstasy along with Somatropin, a synthetic human growth hormone.

Dykstra was charged with five counts of attempted grand theft auto, eight counts of filing false financial statements, four counts of identity theft, three counts of grand theft auto and three counts of possession of a controlled substance. All are felonies. In addition, he was charged with one misdemeanor count each of possession of a controlled substance without a prescription and unauthorized possession of a syringe.

In exchange for his plea, the remaining charges will be dismissed at sentencing. If Dykstra fails to appear for sentencing, he faces up to six years in state prison.

In September, Hymers pleaded no contest to one felony count of identity theft and Gavanis pleaded no contest to one felony count of filing a false financial statement. Their sentencing was put over for a year.

June 10, 2011

Former baseball star Lenny Dykstra jailed on new charges

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

SAN FERNANDO – Former New York Mets star Lenny Dykstra was charged today (June 6, 2011) with multiple counts of trying to lease cars using phony business and credit information and with drug possession, the District Attorney’s office announced.

Dykstra, 48, and two co-defendants –Robert Hymers, 27, his accountant, and Christopher Gavanis, 30, a friend — were charged today in case PA070678. They are scheduled to be arraigned today at San Fernando Superior Court, Department S, said Deputy District Attorney Alex Karkanen with the Auto Insurance Fraud Division. He will ask bail be set at $500,000 for all three.

Beginning in January, Dykstra, Hymers and Gavanis tried to lease various high-end automobiles from several area dealerships by allegedly providing fraudulent information and claiming credit through a phony business, Home Free Systems.

At two dealerships, Dykstra and Hymers allegedly provided information from a man they claimed was a co-signer but who had not authorized his name to be used.

Leases were not approved at two dealerships. However, all three men allegedly drove off with three cars at one company by providing fraudulent information.

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October 28, 2009

Can an insane defendant choose the plea he wants to enter?

Defendant wants to enter a plea of not guilty by reason of insanity. Court holds that a defendant can choose to enter whatever plea he wants, even a plea of not guilty by reason of insanity.

Defendant’s conviction for burglary, attempted robbery, and related crimes is affirmed as, although the trial court erred in refusing to allow defendant to exercise his personal statutory right to enter a plea of not guilty by reason of insanity (NGI) and in failing to remove defense counsel who refused to allow defendant to enter his NGI plea, both of the errors are harmless in light of abundant, uncontradicted evidence in the record demonstrating there was no factual basis for a finding of not guilty by reason of insanity where defendant claimed he was hallucinating from crystal methamphetamine use while playing the video game Grand Theft Auto for 10 hours.

People v. Henning 10/14/2009 Case No. C060371 __ Cal.App.4th__

IN THE COURT OF APPEAL OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA
THIRD APPELLATE DISTRICT
(Placer)
—-

THE PEOPLE,
Plaintiff and Respondent,
v.
JAISEN LEE HENNING,
Defendant and Appellant.

APPEAL from a judgment of the Superior Court of Placer County, Charles D. Wachob, Judge. Affirmed.
Law Offices of John F. Schuck and John F. Schuck, under
appointment by the Court of Appeal, for Defendant and Appellant.
Edmund G. Brown Jr., Attorney General, Michael P. Farrell, Senior Assistant Attorney General, David A. Rhodes and Ivan P. Marrs, Deputy Attorneys General, for Plaintiff and Respondent.
After a marathon session of playing the Grand Theft Auto video game, and while hallucinating under the influence of

illicit drugs, defendant Jaisen Lee Henning donned a black ski mask and wielded a sawed-off shotgun in an attempt to rob a randomly chosen business. Fleeing from the scene, Henning led police officers on a high-speed car chase before being apprehended.

A jury convicted defendant of burglary (Pen. Code, § 459),1 attempted robbery (§§ 211, 664), assault with a firearm (§ 245, subd. (a) (2)), evading a police officer (Veh. Code, § 2800.2, subd. (a)), and possession of a sawed-off shotgun (§ 12020, subd. (a) (1)). On appeal, defendant argues that (1) he should have been allowed to plead not guilty by reason of insanity (NGI) because he committed his crimes while believing he was merely following the goals of the video game he had been playing, (2) his request for a second substitution of appointed counsel should have been granted pursuant to People v. Marsden
(1970) 2 Cal.3d 118 (Marsden), and (3) CALCRIM No. 220 failed to instruct the jury that each element of the charged offenses required proof beyond a reasonable doubt. (more…)

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