Wednesday, April 29, 2015

IN THE NEWS: Trial ordered in Oro Grande shooting

Shawn Myers is ushered into a Victorville Superior Court room for his preliminary hearing on Tuesday morning. Myers is accused of attempted murder in Oro Grande. James Quigg, Daily Press

By Shea Johnson

VICTORVILLE — A 40-year-old man suspected of shooting another man once in the stomach and again in the arm was ordered Tuesday to stand trial for attempted murder.

Shawn Myers was arrested Dec. 12 in the 16700 block of Sunset Road in Victorville, more than two weeks after a shooting in Oro Grande that left 23-year-old Steven Brown seriously injured.

Now in a wheelchair, Brown was rolled in front of the counsels’ desk during Tuesday’s emotionally-charged preliminary hearing to testify about the Nov. 25 incident, with San Bernardino County Deputy District Attorney Sherman Curi sitting just two feet in front of him.

Several times, Victorville Superior Court Judge Raymond L. Haight was forced to sustain objections by Myers’ defense attorney, Brian Watson, because Brown’s responses were often off-topic.

“It’s hard,” Brown said about testifying at one point. “I feel bad that I keep going through this ... with this girl that didn’t really love me in the first place ... I’m so (messed) up in the head from this! And (Myers) shot me, (but) she did me in.”

Brown testified his mother had dropped him off in Oro Grande to see a woman he described as having an off-and-on relationship with. The two were drinking and smoking marijuana at the woman’s father’s house, before going to Oro Grande Market for liquor.

After buying a bottle of Schnapps, the two hung out in front of Cross Eyed Cow Pizza, when the woman asked Brown if he wanted to meet her friend, Myers, according to Brown’s testimony.

Brown said he believed he was in a relationship with the woman, but soon found out that Myers and the woman were together. Outside Myers’ home, Brown claimed he acted non-confrontational toward Myers, only telling Myers that if he didn’t treat the woman right, he would take issue with him.

According to Brown, Myers went inside his home at some point — reportedly not goaded by any threats — returned with a chrome 12-gauge shotgun and told the woman, who held Brown’s cell phone, to move and then aimed the gun at him.

“I didn’t say nothing,” Brown said. “He already had his mind made up (to shoot).”

Brown said he was struck once in the right side of his stomach and again in the right arm. The bullets left fragments in his chest and arm.

“I ran into the (Oro Grande) market. I tried to get my phone from (the woman) to get some help, but she had it still,” said Brown, growing overcome with emotion and no longer following Curi’s questioning.

“I need help! Call an ambulance! He shot me!” Brown cried.

Sitting in the fourth row of the gallery, Brown’s mother wiped tears from her face. Haight called for a short recess and warned Curi that he would declare a mistrial if Brown couldn’t be controlled. Eleven minutes later, the hearing resumed and Watson examined a now more composed Brown about two felony convictions on his record, including making criminal threats, one which sent Brown to prison.
But despite Watson’s persistence, Brown insisted he did not threaten Myers, nor escalate the situation, and told Watson that during that day he only drank one beer, inhaled one “hit” of marijuana and took one “swig” of the Schnapps.

Brown also denied telling Myers that he possessed a gun or reached at his waistband as if to grab a gun.

San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Detective Scott Chapdelaine, the second and last witness to testify, took the stand briefly only to provide Myers’ date of birth and confirm that he conducted the investigation into Brown’s shooting.

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Monday, April 20, 2015

Scenes from Monday's Second Annual National Crime Victims’ Rights Week Memorial

 Victim Advocates from San Bernardino County District Attorney's Office share information about available services.
Father Benedict Nwachukwu-Udaku delivers the invocation.

Supervisor and Chairman of the Board James Ramos leads the Pledge of Allegiance while the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Honor Guard presents the Colors.

Deputy Coroner Investigator Lela Perriello fills the County Rotunda with "Amazing Grace."

District Attorney Mike Ramos speaks to a crowd of approximately 300 seated in the County Rotunda.

San Bernardino Police Officer Gabe Garcia and family rises to standing ovation following a Moment of Silence for all crime victims.

Executive Officer Julie Nauman from the California Victims Compensation Program

The Redlands East Valley High School Choir, under the direction of Rita Stephens, perform.
Former camper-turned-counselor Jimmy Gonzalez, discusses the impact that Camp Good Grief had in his life.

District Attorney Mike Ramos presents Dinah Evans and Dorothy Brooks from Loma Linda Children's Hospital with the Award for Exemplary Service to Victims for their work with Camp Good Grief.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

National Crime Victims’ Rights Week

Crimes Against Children Prosecutor Jane Templeton honored for her work

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif.  – Deputy District Attorney Jane Templeton was recognized Thursday at the 17th Annual “Shine a Light” on Child Abuse Awards Breakfast for her dedication and commitment as a Crimes Against Children prosecutor. The annual event, hosted by Children’s Network, is held at the end of March as a kick-off for Child Abuse Prevention Awareness Month in April.
Templeton is a 15-year veteran prosecutor assigned to the Central Division Family Violence Unit, who specializes in the prosecution of felony crimes against children. She currently has 40-plus child abuse cases on her caseload.
According to Chief Deputy District Attorney Simon Umscheid, who oversees the Central Division, despite the heavy workload, Ms. Templeton always handles her cases with the victim’s well-being in mind.
“She is always able to put the victim first not only in the handling of the case but also in the final outcome of the case,” said Umscheid. “She is frequently able to work out significant dispositions sparing the child from having to face the perpetrator in open court.”
Umscheid added that this results in both securing justice for the victim and also sparing them the traumatizing experience of testifying in open court.