Court Roundup

New York
Bad parking job leads to wanted NY man’s arrest

ROTTERDAM, N.Y. (AP) — State police say bad parking led to the apprehension of an upstate New York man wanted on a probation violation.
Troopers say a state police investigator spotted 23-year-old Matthew Bergeron of Richmondville on Thursday afternoon as he tried to back a vehicle into a parking space at a truck stop in Rotterdam in Schenectady County.
Police say Bergeron parked crookedly, straddling two spaces, then walked away from the vehicle.
The investigator knew Bergeron from previous arrests. He also knew that Bergeron was a suspect in a burglary and was wanted on outstanding warrants in neighboring Schoharie County.
Police say Bergeron was taken into custody without incident. He was sent to the Schoharie County jail.

California
2 men get several decades to life for gang rape of teen

MARTINEZ, Calif. (AP) — One man was sentenced to 33 years to life in prison Thursday and another was sentenced to 29 years to life for their roles in the gang rape of a 16-year-old girl outside a Northern California high school dance.
Contra Costa County Judge Barbara Zuniga gave the longer sentence to Jose Montano, 22, and the shorter term to Marcelles Peter, 20, because Peter was a minor at the time of the crime.
“I cannot overlook that,” Zuniga said of Peter’s age.
The victim, a sophomore known in court only as Jane Doe, did not attend the sentencing, but her dramatic testimony during the trial, the first in the case that involves six different defendants, helped lead to the men’s convictions last month for the 2009 attack outside a homecoming dance at Richmond High School.
Authorities said the girl was beaten, robbed and sexually abused by numerous men over two hours while as many as 20 people watched. Police discovered her heavily intoxicated, partially nude and unconscious under a picnic table.
A jury found Montano and Peter guilty of forcible rape, sexual penetration and forced oral copulation.
Both men had been eligible for the maximum sentence of 33 years to life that Montano received.

Massachusetts
Son of Red Sox broadcaster faces murder charge

WALTHAM, Mass. (AP) — The son of longtime Boston Red Sox broadcaster Jerry Remy has been charged with fatally stabbing his girlfriend.
Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan says Jared Remy is scheduled to be arraigned Friday on a murder charge in connection with the death of 27-year-old Jennifer Martel.
Ryan said at a news conference that Remy and Martel were involved in a “romantic relationship.”
Ryan says police went to a Waltham apartment complex at about 10 p.m. Thursday and they found Martel outside with multiple stab wounds.
It’s unclear if Jared Remy has an attorney.
A child in the apartment was unhurt and is now in the custody of state child welfare officials.
Jerry Remy has been a New England Sports Network Red Sox broadcaster since 1988.

New Jersey
Judge sentences ex-NJ woman who faked cancer

MOUNT HOLLY, N.J. (AP) — A New Jersey judge has ordered a woman to perform 500 hours of community service for scamming relatives and others into thinking she was dying of cancer.
Lori Stilley pleaded guilty to theft by deception for receiving nearly $12,000 in donations from more than 300 people in 20 states, who even paid for her wedding. She was sentenced Thursday.
Prosecutors say the 41-year-old former Delran resident told relatives and posted on Facebook in 2011 that she had been diagnosed with bladder cancer. But they became suspicious when Stilley said she was feeling better.
The Philadelphia Inquirer reports Stilley’s younger sister and ex-husband asked the judge to impose the maximum sentence because of the emotional damage she caused her 13-year-old daughter and 8-year-old son.
Stilley has remarried and lives in Chester County, Pa.

California
Man’s charge upped to murder after tweets

PLEASANTON, Calif. (AP) — An 18-year-old accused of killing a bicyclist with his car has had a vehicular manslaughter charge upgraded to murder in part because he boasted about speeding on Twitter, prosecutors said Thursday.
Cody Hall, of Pleasanton, was being held without bail after he was charged Wednesday with the murder of 58-year-old Diana Hersevoort, the San Francisco Chronicle and Oakland Tribune reported.
Hall was going more than 80 mph in a 40 mph zone when he hit Hersevoort and her husband along a busy boulevard in Dublin on June 9, prosecutors allege. Hersevoort’s husband only broke an arm, but she was killed.
An analysis of Hall’s driving record, along with Twitter posts in which he discussed how fast he liked to drive, persuaded prosecutors to change the charge to murder, the Alameda County district attorney’s office told the Chronicle.
Prosecutors did not immediately reply to messages left by The Associated Press, and a Twitter account apparently belonging to Hall is restricted from public view.
Brian Welch, a supervisor of the homicide unit at the Santa Clara County district attorney’s office who is not involved in this case, told the Tribune that in most circumstances, fatal crashes result in murder charges when the suspect was recklessly fleeing police or was a drunken driver with previous convictions, not because of something like a Twitter feed.
Welch said in this case it is likely the tweets will serve as what’s called a “pre-offense statement,” often an email, handwritten note or text message, used to bolster prosecutors’ attempt to prove malice.
“The challenge in these situations is proving that your defendant is the person who posted the statement,” he said.
Neither the newspapers nor The Associated Press could reach an attorney for Hall for comment.

Florida
Protesters upset with Zimmerman verdict disperse

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Protesters angered by the acquittal of George Zimmerman in Trayvon Martin’s killing are leaving the Florida Capitol after staging a 31-day protest.
The small but determined group wanted Gov. Rick Scott to call a special session to repeal the state’s “stand your ground” law.
Scott refused. But House Speaker Will Weatherford agreed to hold a legislative hearing.
Organizers say they are not giving up on their goals.
The Dream Defenders plan to return when lawmakers hold committee meetings in September.

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