If you or a loved one is charged with California Penal Code 187 PC murder, your best option is to hire the best criminal defense attorney you can find.
I often see the family looking for a lawyer because the person charged with the murder is in custody, has limited access to a phone, makes calls, and can talk to an attorney.
So, much of my conversation is geared toward trying to help the family figure out how to get the best possible attorney. To me, that's step number one. If you want to get the best result in a murder case, you better have a lawyer that can fight for your loved one.
Having done this now for over 30 years, I've noticed that many lawyers are afraid to deal with murder cases because of the potential downside for their clients.
Because their client is often facing life in prison, and sometimes lawyers don't have the stomach for that. I've done many murder cases over a 30-year career in LA and various counties.
So, I have much experience fighting cases at jury trials, negotiating with the prosecutors, and trying to resolve the cases.
Fight the Case or Negotiate a Plea Bargain?
That's probably one of the first things you want to do once you hire an attorney; your loved one and attorney wish to figure out whether it's a case that should be fought to a jury trial or the type of case should be resolved.
Sometimes, there's no choice. The prosecutors won't make an offer, or their offer is so high it's not worth taking. It's not worth going to prison for 25 years versus going to trial and getting a little more time. So, you might as well fight the case. So, we've got to see what circumstance we find ourselves in.
Also, we want to see if the case has a defense. Sometimes there's self-defense in murder cases. Sometimes it's what I would characterize as a who-done-it.
In other words, they're not 100% sure who the person was that killed the victim in the case was. They think it is the client, but the evidence is questionable. Such as the following:
- Maybe there's no gun;
- Maybe there's no DNA evidence;
- Maybe there are no eyewitnesses;
- Maybe there's no video evidence.
Who knows what the circumstances are? So that's why you've got to get an experienced criminal defense attorney because I can tell you right now on these murder cases why sometimes it's tough to get a good result.
Aside from the fact that somebody died, and obviously, that's the highest crime known to man and prosecutors, and judges take those cases the most seriously.
Prosecution of PC 187 Murder Cases
The second reason is that they put the best prosecutors on these cases with the most experience, and the law enforcement agencies that are investigating these cases, whether it be the LAPD, the sheriffs, or any local law enforcement agency, are usually going to put their homicide detectives on it, their top people:
- People who have experience dealing with these types of cases; and
- Know how to prosecute them and help the prosecutors deal with these cases.
Another huge thing that is impacting murder cases, both for the bad and the good, depending on what your perspective is, is technology. A lot of these murder cases are being solved with technology. Whether it be the following:
- DNA evidence;
- video evidence;
- bodycam evidence;
- evidence of videos on homes, on businesses;
- ping evidence.
Ping evidence is where they're using phone technology in Cellebrite to figure out where somebody's phone is or at least close to where the phone is at the time of the crime.
Another big thing that's being used in these murder cases is what they call a Perkin’s informant. The police have specific units inside jails that send in undercover police officers posing as inmates.
Sometimes they use real inmates who are gang members who are trying to work off their case, and they pose as an inmate. Still, they're trying to get information from the person, and they'll start asking the person about their crime. Unfortunately, believe it or not, some people are stupid enough to give these informants information.
It's tape-recorded, and then it's used later in the trial. Sometimes that's the best evidence the prosecutors have in the trial, from the person's mouth, making statements that show that they were either a participant or the killer in a murder case.
So, with all of this going on, you've got to have the best. You've come to the right place. I've worked for the DA's office, I've worked for a superior court judge, and I've been defending murder cases now since the early 1990s.
Pick up the phone now. Ask for a meeting with Ron Hedding. We'll talk about the case. Once I figure out where the case is, how many defendants there are, and what all the charges are – sometimes it's not just murder.
Sometimes, there are other charges in enhancements, like gun enhancement or gang enhancements, that go along with the murder charge. I'll give you an idea of what we charge. I'm not afraid to do that. Sometimes people can afford it. Sometimes they can't, but don't let that stop you. You've got to get out there and try to help your loved one if they're charged with murder. My name is Ron Hedding. I stand ready to help.