A simple phrase from a sentencing hearing in a difficult high-profile case
Sentencing hearings in criminal cases can be difficult. Often in criminal law we see those before the court with clean records there by chance or bad luck. This case was perhaps neither. Jay’s client had a blood alcohol below the legal limit but had been drinking. Jay’s client was arrested. There was no DUI charged, but homicide – specifically vehicular manslaughter with gross criminal negligence – was charged. Murder would have carried with it a life sentence. Jay’s client got into a freak accident on a mountain, flipping his Jeep and killing his girlfriend. He went from model citizen to someone looking at jail or prison. Jay’s client was looking down the barrel at a potential sentence of many years, with a threat of a murder charge hanging over his head. Both Jay’s client and the decedent were police officers. This made the stakes so much higher.
He is a good person. He did a bad thing
The sentencing hearing was very long and extraordinarily emotional. There were legal issues to be resolved and there was the issue of whether my client would be afforded a chance at probation. California State Bar Certified Criminal Law Specialist and Ventura California Attorney Jay Leiderman secured a probationary sentence for his client – against all odds and steep protestations from the prosecutor’s office. Success, a win; but a hollow-feeling success. It was a horrible situation all around. Lives were wrecked, some people will never get over this – the decedent’s family and my client being prime among them. One quote best summarizes the sentencing hearing:
“He is a good person. He did a bad thing,” Leiderman told the judge.
From: Santa Paula man gets probation for drunken-driving crash that killed fellow officer. Read the whole article here: http://archive.vcstar.com/news/santa-paula-man-gets-probation-for-drunken-driving-crash-that-killed-fellow-officer-ep-292786674-351708121.htmlhttp://archive.vcstar.com/news/santa-paula-man-gets-probation-for-drunken-driving-crash-that-killed-fellow-officer-ep-292786674-351708121.html