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A Successful Murder Defense Story

Posted by Ronald D. Hedding | May 18, 2024

Recently, I was defending my client in a jury trial with multiple defendants, and he and the other defendants were all charged with California Penal Code 187 PC murder.

I'm not going to get into all of the details and facts of the case so I can protect my client's identity, but suffice it to say, there was one shooter in the case while the other people were involved with the robbery, which resulted in a death.

My client was not identified as the shooter. The only surviving witness in the case could not identify anybody from the people who had been arrested.

Penal Code 187 PC says, "(a) Murder is the unlawful killing of a human being, or a fetus, with malice aforethought.

Malice aforethought does not require hatred or ill will toward the victim. It is a mental state that must be formed before the act that causes death is committed. It does not require deliberation or the passage of any particular period of time.

Murder Trial

Several years after the murder, the case went to trial. The only surviving witness testified during the trial, and we took a lunch break.

After the lunch break, the DA informed me that the detective had lunch with the alleged victim, and while he was on the witness stand, he recognized my client as the shooter.

This was unbelievable because (1) it's years later, and he initially never identified my client as the shooter; and (2) the prosecutor did not believe, based on the evidence in the case, that my client was the shooter, and in fact, did not even have him charged as the shooter.

This created a massive problem for me, so I now had to go on the offensive not only to prove that my client wasn't the shooter but also to prove that one of the co-defendants was the shooter. Otherwise, my client would face a 25-year enhancement regarding the particular crime.

Presenting Evidence

So, that caused me to be able to show evidence that the co-defendant was the one who shot the gun. That included video evidence, circumstantial evidence, and all sorts of different things. I had to do it on the fly because I only had that witness on the stand right as I was given that information. It was my turn to cross-examine the witness.

This shows you that I was successful in proving that my client was not the shooter, which saved him 25 years to life in prison, but it was not easy, and it's because I've been handling these cases for over 30 years. I've dealt with a lot of murder cases.

A lot of criminal defense attorneys, in my experience, are afraid to handle murder cases because of the potential ramifications and because they do not have the stomach for it, do not feel comfortable doing those types of cases.

There's a tiny community, even in Los Angeles, as big as it is, that can handle these types of cases correctly or even want to take them.

Highly-Experienced Murder Defense

So, if you or a loved one is facing a murder charge and you need the best, put my 30 years of experience to work for you. I've been working on these cases since the early 1990s, starting out working for the district attorney's office.

Then, I worked for a superior court judge as his right-hand man, giving me a good perspective on the other side. In the early 1990s, I became a criminal defense attorney, and I've been handling murder cases ever since.

The second case that I ever did, my second jury trial, was a murder case where I got a not-guilty verdict on the murder charge. If you need the best, pick up the phone now. Ask for a meeting with Ron Hedding.

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About the Author

Ronald D. Hedding

What Makes Ronald Hedding Uniquely Qualified To Represent You? I've been practicing criminal defense for almost 30 years and have handled thousands of cases, including all types of state and federal sex crime cases. All consultations are discreet and confidential.