Category Archives:Sentencing

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Wife of Oceanside Police Chief, Brinda McCoy Sentenced to 15-years in State Prison

Brinda Sue McCoy, the wife of Oceanside police chief and Cypress Mayor Frank McCoy, was sentenced to 15 years in state prison Friday for shooting at officers outside her Cypress home. McCoy dialed 911 in 2010 and initiated a 90-minute stand off during which she fired two shots at police. The stand off ended with McCoy crawling to her front door and being subsequently shot with beanbag ammunition by police officers. At her trial McCoy blamed her behavior on her own suicidal thoughts, driven by alcohol and prescription pills. She testified that at one point, she hoped if she called the police they would shoot and kill her. 

McCoy, 49, was convicted in June of five felony counts of assault with a semi-automatic firearm on a peace officer, and one felony count of discharging a fire arm with gross negligence. Following her conviction, Superior Court Judge Francisco Briseno allowed McCoy to be free on bail, but imposed rigid limitations upon her. A few days later, officers found her bleeding in the backyard of her Cypress home after an effort to commit suicide. Briseno ordered her to be taken back into custody on a no-bail warrant. 

When McCoy was sentenced the convictions carried a maximum 29 year prison sentence, but prosecutor Rebecca Olivieri agreed to modify the sentencing enhancements to reduce the jail time. The modifications are partially due to McCoy’s mental health and the fact that she had no prior criminal convictions. The modification allowed Judge Briseno to enforce the lesser term. Though McCoy and the prosecutor reached an agreement, the agreement has several conditions. Most notably, McCoy has agreed to give up her right to an appeal or a new trial. 

It is unusual to modify charges following a conviction. Prosecutor Olivieri explained that she considered factors such as McCoy’s 20-year nursing career, raising a family that includes a son who is a police officer, a daughter who is a police dispatcher, and another daughter in the military. 

A felony is a serious crime and has long lasting effects even after imprisonment. Those convicted of a felony can pay fine or serve jail time. After the imprisonment term has been completed, in many parts of the United States, a convicted felon can face long term legal consequences such as: exclusion from obtaining certain licenses; purchasing fire arms; ineligibility for government assistance programs such as welfare; and sometimes deportation. Additionally, most job applications and rental applications ask if the applicant has ever been convicted of a felony or faced felony charges. 
The goal of the attorneys at Don Ho, LLP, is to provide aggressive and comprehensive defense to those accused of a crime throughout the State of California. The Orange County Law Firm of  Don Ho, LLP, offers a free initial consultation where our criminal defense attorneys will explain the charges you are being accused of and what the District Attorney’s office needs to do to prove their case, as well as explain your rights and provide a fair and unbiased evaluation of your case.  
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Dr. Murray Receives Maximum Sentence For Death of King of Pop

LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 28:  Dr. Conrad Murr...Image by Getty Images via @daylife
In a previous post, we discussed how a unanimous jury convicted Dr. Conrad Murray of involuntary manslaughter in the death of singer Michael Jackson.  On Tuesday, Dr. Murray returned to court for sentencing.  The result: Dr. Murray was sentenced to four years in the Los Angeles County Jail.  
Judge Michael E. Pastor, before announcing the sentence, highlighted Dr. Murray’s lack of remorse. “To hear Dr. Murray say it, Dr. Murray was a bystander,” the judge said. “Talk about blaming the victim. Not only is there not any remorse, there’s umbrage and outrage.”  Dr. Murray did not testify at the trial and declined to speak at his sentencing hearing as well.
It still remains unclear as to how much time Dr. Murray will actually serve.  Four years is the maximum sentence allowed for involuntary manslaughter under California’s new sentencing laws that went into effect October 1, 2011.  
A conviction under Penal Code 192 PC California’s involuntary manslaughter law su.
  • formal probation with up to one year county jail, OR
  • a two, three, or four-year California state prison sentence.
 Plus these additional consequences:
  • a maximum $10,000 fine,
  • the loss of the right to own or possess a firearm pursuant to Penal Code 12021 PC California’s “felon with a firearm” law, and
  • possible professional discipline
Under the prior sentencing laws, Dr. Murray would have been sentenced to four years in state prison.  He most likely would only serve two full years in prison.  At the conclusion of his prison term he would have been placed on three years of parole.  However, under the new law he will serve his time in the Los Angeles County Jail instead of prison.  In addition, is it is extremely unlikely that he will serve his entire four year sentence.  Based upon the nature of his crime and lack of prior record and the overcrowded condition of the Los Angeles County Jail, he could serve as little as a few weeks or months in custody.  Moreover, unlike under prior sentencing law, once Dr. Murray is released from custody, he will not be placed on parole or probation.
Dr. Murray, will also be obligated to pay restitution to Jackson’s estate and family.  The Judge set a January hearing to determine the amount.  In addition to paying almost $1,000 in fines and fees for his conviction,  However, it will not likely be the prosecution’s requested amount of $100 million, given the state of Murray’s financial affairs.
More details about the guilty verdict are available in earlier blog posts.
If you’re facing involuntary manslaughter charges or any other serious criminal offense, contact the Orange County Criminal Law firm of Don Ho, LLP immediately for assistance on building your defense.
All factual information taken from the New York Times.
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