The trial for a Riverside County sheriff's deputy who is accused of
shooting an unarmed man outside a Murrieta bar when he was off duty is
nearing its start date.
According to the Murrieta Patch, the fatal shooting occurred in Dec. 2011.
Evidently, the deputy had been at Spelly's Pub and Grille when an
argument broke out. The prosecution has alleged that the fight was strictly
verbal until the 43-year-old deputy took out a .45 and shot the 36-year-old
victim in the chest. The man died as a result of his wounds.
The sheriff's deputy has been charged with first-degree murder. He
is being held at Southwest Detention Center in lieu of $1 million bail.
We thought there were two important things to note about this story.
The first is that every person, including the sheriff's deputy, is
innocent until proven guilty. That is a truism of our criminal justice
system that extends to everyone.
Second, even if the sheriff's deputy is eventually found not guilty,
it is an understatement to say that he was involved in a situation that
would have been good to avoid altogether. This show that law enforcement
officers are not infallible. They certainly deserve our respect, but that
does not mean some of them do not occasionally make mistakes, just as
we all do.
As Riverside County Criminal Defense attorneys, we serve clients from the
communities of Temecula, Murrieta, Lake Elsinore, Wildomar, Menifee, Perris,
Banning, Corona, Hemet and Riverside. You are welcome to
contact us if you think it would be helpful to have more information about the sort
of legal counsel we provide.