Friday, March 04, 2016

People v. Adams (Cal. Ct. App. - March 3, 2016)

From this opinion:

"Defendants were cousins and fellow members of a violent street gang. May 2 was the gang’s 'birthday' or 'gang day.' On May 2, 2011, Diane T. was working as a prostitute. . . . Defendants approached Mr. Odhiambo’s car. Mr. Moreland pointed a black gun at Mr. Odhiambo’s head. Mr. Moreland took Mr. Odhiambo’s car keys and money. Mr. Adams asked Diane for money. He forcibly searched inside her pants and bra. Mr. Adams grabbed Diane and dragged her to the white car. Mr. Adams raped Diane in the backseat. Mr. Adams then moved to the driver’s seat. Over the course of an hour or more, while Mr. Adams drove, Mr. Moreland repeatedly sexually and physically assaulted Diane in the backseat. Mr. Moreland was armed with a gun during the assaults. Mr. Moreland forced Diane several times to orally copulate him. He repeatedly raped her. Mr. Moreland attempted to sodomize her. He repeatedly hit her on the head. . . .

Mr. Moreland ordered Diane out of the car. He punched her in the face breaking her jaw. Mr. Moreland told Diane to get on her knees. He ordered her to orally copulate him. Diane refused. Mr. Moreland pointed the gun at Diane’s forehead and fired twice. But the gun malfunctioned. Diane heard it click. Diane saw Mr. Moreland 'messing with the gun.' He was hitting it against his hand. Diane got up and started to run. Mr. Moreland ran toward the car. She heard him arguing with Mr. Adams. Mr. Adams said, 'Stop, bitch.' Diane stopped behind a truck. Mr. Adams pointed the gun at her. She heard a click. Diane ran to a nearby house and summoned help. Defendants left the scene.

After law enforcement officers arrived at the cul-de-sac, Diane described her assailants. Diane said one suspect was a 25 to 35 year old light skinned male Black, approximately 6 feet tall with a muscular build. The second suspect was a 25 to 30 year old dark skinned Black male, approximately 6 feet tall with a thin build. . . . Diane also worked with a forensic artist, Sandra Enslow, to create sketches of the perpetrators. At trial, Diane testified, '[The sketch artist] drew them perfect.' The jury was able to compare the sketches to defendants’ booking photographs as well as to how they appeared in the courtroom. Upon our own review, it is apparent that the sketches bear a striking resemblance to the defendants."

Let's hear it for the sketch artist.  That can't be an easy job.  Well done here.