Thursday, August 7, 2008

jail race riot arraignments

Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office     8-7-08

Eight charged with murder in 2006 jail race riot

LOS ANGELES – Eight men were arraigned today on murder and conspiracy charges stemming from a February 2006 race riot that left one man dead at a
Los Angeles County jail facility in Castaic.

The defendants were indicted on the charges on June 18, but the true bill was not unsealed until today when the eight were arraigned. Deputy District Attorney Dayan Mathai of the Hardcore Gang Division, the prosecutor who presented the case to the Los Angeles County Grand Jury, said bail for each defendant is $2.070 million. All are in custody.

The indictment outlined the seeds of the riot, which the document said involved white and Hispanic inmates chasing down African-American inmates. The riot was in a dormitory at the North County Correctional facility.

According to the indictment, talk about an upcoming riot began on Feb. 2-3, 2006. The riot itself occurred on Feb. 4, 2006. Wayne Tiznor, 45, an African-American inmate, was killed.

Named in the indictment are: Osbaldo Valenzuela, 29 (dob 11-26-1978); Enrique Reyes, 30 (dob 10-26-1977); Andres Madrigal, 27 (dob 1-24-1981); David Reynoso, 25 (dob 8-9-1984); Donald Bottoms, 26 (dob 8-20-1981); Christopher Shrauger, 30 (dob 4-15-1978); Steven Burns, 26 (dob 12-7-1981); and Christopher Crews, 28 (dob 7-10-1980).

The defendants are charged with Tiznor’s murder. The indictment also alleges that the murder was gang-related and was a hate crime. The defendants, according to the indictment, acted in concert.

The conspiracy count alleges the defendants conspired to commit assault by means likely to cause great bodily injury. It also was alleged that the defendants acted in concert and the conspiracy was gang-related and a hate crime.

If convicted, the defendants could be sentenced to prison for life. Mathai said the hate crime allegation on the murder charge carries a life-without-parole sentence. The other crimes and allegations carry a life sentence with the possibility of parole.

The defendants are scheduled to appear in Los Angeles Superior Court Department 108 on Sept. 25 for a pre-trial hearing. A trial date has not yet been scheduled.



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