Friday, October 30, 2015

Victor Valley Footprinters Association recognizes Lead DDA Kathy DiDonato with Top Prosecutor Award

Lead DDA Kathy DiDonato (pictured left) receives
Victor Valley Footprinters Association Award
(photo courtesy of Miki Marhoefer)
Lead Deputy District Attorney Kathleen DiDonato is assigned to the Family Violence Unit in the Victorville Office.  She has been a prosecutor for over 14 years.  As the Lead Attorney, she handles the most serious cases in this unit, including the Major Crimes Against Children cases.  Ms. DiDonato lives in the high desert.  She is married and has one son, who is in college.

Recently, Ms. DiDonato has completed three back-to-back jury trials that were all very significant cases.  People v. Ellery Thomas was a case where the defendant was convicted of sexually assaulting his biological daughter over a five-month period.  The defendant was convicted and received 64 years, 8 months in prison.  The next trial was People v. Arthur Holmes.  This defendant was charged with second degree murder and child abuse causing death.  The defendant was the part-time boyfriend of the victim’s mother. 
 
The victim, a 9-month-old baby boy, died of shaken baby syndrome.  Despite the fact that this was a challenging case to prove who caused the injuries, Ms. DiDonato was able to obtain this conviction.  The defendant is awaiting sentencing and is expected to receive 25 years to life.    Ms. DiDonato also did the People v. Luis Sanchez trial.  This case received considerable media coverage.  The defendant was convicted of 29 counts of sexually assaulting his step-daughter, who was only 6 years old at the time that the molestation began.  The defendant received 366 years, 8 month to life for these crimes. 

Kathleen DiDonato shows incredible dedication to pursuing justice for our most vulnerable victims.  She is sensitive to the needs of the victims and has an excellent demeanor when working with small children.  She makes every effort to protect her victims and minimize the trauma while testifying.  She has a passion for these cases and she works diligently with law enforcement to make the strongest cases possible.  She has developed an expertise and frequently teaches on this topic at the Sheriff’s Academy, college classes, and domestic violence shelters.  Ms. DiDonato is an outstanding recipient of this award and she has certainly earned it! 

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