Thursday, January 04, 2018

People v. Tua (Cal. Ct. App. - Jan. 4, 2018)

The first paragraph of today's opinion begins by saying:

"A jury convicted Roland Isaac Seau of the crimes of murder in the first degree in the death of Louiegie Bermas with the personal use of a deadly weapon; the willful, deliberate, and premeditated attempted murder of Randy Lozano; assault with a deadly weapon on Lozano with the personal use of a knife and personal infliction of great bodily injury; and dissuading a witness, Vanessa Rivera. The jury found that each crime was committed for the benefit of a criminal street gang. In a bifurcated proceeding, Seau admitted two prison priors, a strike prior, and a serious felony prior." (citations omitted)

Well, now, that's a pretty solid batch of charges.  Indeed, you can't get much more solid than that.  I would expect some heavy, heavy time.

Which is exactly what Mr. Seau receives:  102 years to life.

His friend, Mr. Tua, gets sentenced to 75 years to life.  But, again, these are darn serious convictions.  Probably not helped by the fact that Mr. Tua has a tattoo on the left side of his neck that says "Fuck a Snitch."

The crimes here also reflect the somewhat random -- and harsh -- nature of life on the relevant streets.  The person who's stabbed and almost dies is a guy who was a gang member from Fallbrook who made the mistake of moving to Oceanside.  Even though he was friends with everyone there, and didn't seem to make enemies with anyone, he still randomly suffers his fate.

It's even worse (obviously) for the guy who was killed.  As far as I can tell, he didn't do anything.  At all.  He's not even in a gang.  He was just a guy with a slight build who was friends with the other guy.  A fact that got him killed.

What a harsh world in which to live.