Commentary by Criminal Law Attorney SAM SPITAL:“On January 30, 2013, the UT San Diego electronic edition published an article about a Riverside County 22 year old murder suspect who was arrested the previous day by the San Diego Police. He was identified as Matthew Rowley and reportedly in San Diego. After several hours, the alleged shooter was located with the use of a police helicopter and specially trained dogs who aided in the search; he was then taken into custody for the shooting death of 20 year old Corona resident, Daniel Stordahl.
The staff writer did not include any further information regarding the homicide victim, his family and any possible connection with the murder suspect. In addition, there was nothing further reported regarding the shooter to help determine any possible motive for the killing or surrounding facts and circumstances. It is unfortunate that very little is provided for the reader to have a balanced report rather than a story that simply identifies an event as if nothing more is important.
The role of the defense lawyer at the outset will undoubtedly be to investigate all of the facts in order to develop a plan of action and strategy to represent a client who is charged with murder. One or more private investigators will be employed as well as forensic experts. A Deputy Public Defender at County expense is assigned to a case when an individual does not have or cannot afford a private attorney.”
Commentary by Sam Spital, San Diego Criminal Attorney:
“On October 23, 2012, the ABC news online edition reported the trial of three teenage gang members began by with the initiation of jury selection. They are charged with murder, robbery, auto theft and shooting into an occupied vehicle; there also is a special allegation that the crimes were committed for the benefit of a street gang. The victim was a college student who in 2010 graduated from La Jolla High School, who responded to a $600 computer for sale on Craigslist. After being lured to a South Bay residence, one of the defendants is reported to have pulled out a gun and demanded the victim’s money. When the defendants drove away, the victim followed. Soon thereafter, one of the defendants fired into the victim’s automobile, shot the victim who was taken to but died at a local hospital.
The defendants face between 50 and 60 years in prison for the crimes in question. Unfortunately, the reporter did not relate a discussion with any of the defense counsel to provide an account of a possible defense or mitigation. Perhaps in the days that follow, a more fair and balanced article will be forthcoming.”SAM SPITAL, FORMER DEPUTY ATORNEY GENERAL
“Sadly, bad things can happen to good people. It is so important that family members, friends and associates be aware of problematic signs that often cause individuals to make bad decisions and/or engage in criminal behavior, and even with no prior criminal history. There are simply far too many pressures that society faces and people need support systems.”
Sam Spital, Criminal Defense Lawyert