National Roundup

Man convicted of stealing from homicide scene

BARNSTABLE, Mass. (AP) — A Massachusetts man who happened upon a double homicide, didn’t report the deaths and stole $240 cash from the home has been sentenced to two years in prison.

The Cape Cod Times reports that Darryl Green, of Falmouth, was sentenced Tuesday after being convicted of larceny.

Prosecutors say the 42-year-old Green went to a Falmouth home in June 2013 to look for drugs and instead found Crystal Perry and Kristofer Williams stabbed to death. They say he
picked up a $100 bill from the floor next to Perry’s body, then went into a bedroom and took another $140.

The homicides remain unsolved.

Green’s attorney sought a lighter sentence, saying there was no physical evidence tying Green to the scene.

Man killed in dispute over touching truck

TITUSVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Authorities in central Florida say a man was killed in a dispute over whether he touched another man’s pickup truck.

Brevard County Sheriff’s spokesman Maj. Tod Goodyear tells the Orlando Sentinel that 67-year-old German Heredia was walking with his granddaughters and their dogs Jan. 5 when Warren Buchanan walked up and accused Heredia of touching his truck.

The two men began arguing. Goodyear says 51-year-old Buchanan then hit Heredia’s face, knocking him to the ground and causing him to hit his head. Heredia was taken to a hospital, where he died.

The Brevard County Medical Examiner’s Office ruled the death a homicide caused by trauma to the head.

Buchanan was arrested Friday and faces a manslaughter charge in Heredia’s death. It isn’t clear if he has an attorney.

More victims make allegations against judge

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — An Arkansas disciplinary panel said Tuesday that more victims have come forward with allegations against a judge accused of carrying on inappropriate sexual relationships with defendants.

The Arkansas Judicial Discipline and Disability Commission filed new civil administrative charges against Cross County District Court Judge Joe Boeckmann after more accusers came forward to say Boeckmann offered them reduced sentences and later took or requested inappropriate photos of them.

Boeckmann’s attorney, Jeff Rosenzweig, didn’t immediately return a phone call late Tuesday seeking comment on the allegations. He filed a seven-page denial of the previous allegations last month.

Boeckmann is accused of showing preferential treatment and handing out off-the-books sentences that included picking up trash at his home. He allegedly took inappropriate photographs of some defendants during those punishments.

Commission Executive Director David Sachar said since the allegations in November, more victims have come forward. Sachar said the amended complaint also includes additional evidence from the commission’s investigators.

“There are new victims. Some of them came forward directly because of media coverage. They contacted us and said, ‘I saw what’s going on and it happened to me too,’” Sachar said.
One accuser, whose name was withheld, said Boeckmann offered him $300 to pose nude in the same position as Michelangelo’s statue of David.

Other men said they narrowly escaped the requests because they brought female family members with them to the scheduled community service.

Sachar said the commission also obtained the photos, many taken from 6 to 8 feet away and others of only the men’s buttocks.

The commission alleged Boeckmann wrote more than 100 checks worth $30,000 to young white men who appeared before him in court or their defense attorneys from his various bank accounts.

The charges were amended to include witness statements saying Boeckmann was seen leaving court with the defendants in his car.

The commission has scheduled a hearing in the case in September.

“We have information from witnesses that go back years, if not decades. That information will be relevant at trial in our opinion. It includes times when Boeckmann was a lawyer and or a prosecutor,” Sachar said, indicating some allegations took place before Boeckmann was elected as a judge.

Through DNA, family finds woman’s remains

SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) — As a county gravedigger, Andrew Trejo has helped numerous families bury their loved ones. Nearly 28 years after his mother disappeared, he will finally get to do the same.

Last year, he and four other relatives gave DNA samples to be checked against unidentified human remains recovered by law enforcement agencies in Orange County, California, and elsewhere in the hopes of finding Kristyne Olivia Trejo, who left her family home in Santa Ana in 1988 and never returned.

Their DNA turned out to be a match with a skull and arm bone found in 1989 in the desert of nearby San Bernardino County.

“I’m sad that we’re not bringing her home alive, but at least we have her, and can properly lay her to rest and we can start the process of healing,” Trejo told reporters.

It’s the first success for Orange County’s “Identify the Missing” Day held last October by the coroner’s division of the Orange County Sheriff’s Department. Cheek swabs were collected from relatives of some 34 missing people to be compared with the DNA of unidentified human remains.

Such events have also been held in Michigan, New York and elsewhere as investigators turn to ever-improving DNA technology to forge connections between people reported missing and unidentified remains.

One of the challenges is geography. Relatives might report a family member missing in one jurisdiction, with a match later found in another state or county.

Bob Hunter, deputy coroner investigator for San Bernardino County, said a similar DNA gathering event held last year in his county might soon yield a similar match to remains found in another California county.

“There are so many unidentified people who need to be identified,” Hunter said, adding that his county has remains of about 600 unidentified people. “This needs to be a national event annually for every county in the United States.”

There is an open homicide investigation in the death of Trejo, he said.

Trejo, who worked as a waitress, was living with her parents and two children in Santa Ana when she disappeared after leaving for a group meeting for recovering addicts, Andrew Trejo said.