Woman Acquitted In Aspiring Model’s Murder

After more than a week of deliberations, jurors acquitted Kelly Soo Park of murder in the death of aspiring model Juliana Redding.  The reading of the verdict sparked emotional and vocal outbursts by Redding’s family and supporters who were inside of the courtroom.

The reason this verdict was so surprising was that Park’s DNA was all over the crime scene where Redding lay strangled and dead.  Specifically, Park’s DNA was on the victim’s clothing and inside of the locked door of her apartment.  It was also on the victim’s cell phone, the knob of the stove that was left on and even found on the victim’s neck, seemingly overwhelming evidence for a conviction.

Jurors were not interviewed and thus, there is no explanation for their verdict of not guilty.  Experts and reporters believe that the case was solely based on DNA evidence and that the District Attorney’s office was never able to explain why a person with no record of violence would commit this type of crime.

There were also many pre-trial issues that the jury was never able to hear about.  For example, in a pre-trial hearing, the judge ruled that the prosecution could not argue that Park worked as “hired muscle” for a doctor who was angry with the victim’s father over a business deal gone wrong.  Additionally, the defense was not allowed to introduce testimony that Redding’s boyfriend could possibly be the killer due to a pattern of jealous and violent behavior leading up to the time of the murder.

This case just goes to show that you are truly innocent until proven guilty.  Even with DNA evidence against you, that still may not be enough for a conviction if you have a smart and aggressive attorney.  If you have been charged with murder, manslaughter or any other violent crime, it is important to contact attorney Ross Erlich right from the start.  Having representation right when the investigation gets underway can prevent incriminating statements and other damaging items of evidence from ever materializing.

Attorney Ross Erlich handles serious and violent crimes in Downtown Los Angeles, CCB, Metropolitan Court, Hollywood, Central Los Angeles, Pasadena, Beverly Hills and all of Los Angeles County.

Donna Jou’s Killer Makes First Appearance

John Steven Burgess, the sex offender who was convicted in the death of a San Diego State University nursing student, entered a not guilty plea Wednesday to charges that include violating parole and being a convicted felon in possession of ammunition.

Burgess pleaded guilty in 2009 to involuntary manslaughter in the death of Jou and was sentenced to five years in state prison. Due to good time credits, Burgess was release last December after serving approximately half of his five year sentence.

When a person is released early from prison, they are released on parole. Parole is, essentially, an extension of prison that allows a convicted felon to live and work in the community under supervision from the Department of Corrections. This supervision typically depends on what a parolee’s conviction was for, but can include regular reporting to a parole officer, drug testing, drug offender registration, sex offender registration, and being subject to search and seizures at any time, even without probable cause.

When a parolee violates any term or condition of their parole, they are taken into custody on a no-bail hold until they see a judge. A parolee is entitled to a formal hearing and is also entitled to have legal representation, which is highly recommended. Each violation of parolee can expose someone to up to 1 year in prison.

If someone you know has been charged with violating parole in the Los Angeles, Mid City, Beverly Hills or Metro areas, contact Attorney Ross Erlich at (818) 783-5700