[conspire] Hans Reiser found guilty

Rick Moen rick at linuxmafia.com
Mon Apr 28 22:53:21 PDT 2008

Quoting William Lazar (bill at billsaysthis.com):

> If sentenced to death the appeals process is automatic and not
> something for which Reiser will have to pay.

In this case, prosecution has _not_ attempted to invoke the "special
circumstances" super-nasty variant of first-degree murder.  Penal Code
190.1 covers this distinction:

     A case in which the death penalty may be imposed pursuant to
  this chapter shall be tried in separate phases as follows:
     (a) The question of the defendant's guilt shall be first
  determined.  If the trier of fact finds the defendant guilty of first
  degree murder, it shall at the same time determine the truth of all
  special circumstances charged as enumerated in Section 190.2 except
  for a special circumstance charged pursuant to paragraph (2) of
  subdivision (a) of Section 190.2 where it is alleged that the
  defendant had been convicted in a prior proceeding of the offense of
  murder in the first or second degree.

My understanding is that, since no such attempt (to prove "special
circumstances") was made, this section determines the penalty:

   190.  (a) Every person guilty of murder in the first degree shall be
   punished by death, imprisonment in the state prison for life without
   the possibility of parole, or imprisonment in the state prison for a
   term of 25 years to life.  The penalty to be applied shall be
   determined as provided in Sections 190.1, 190.2, 190.3, 190.4, and

The listed sections (190.1 through 190.5) list in horrific and verbose
detail the particulars of "special circumstances" cases and how those
cases would work.  Since this is not one of those, then an upcoming
judge's sentence of "25 years to life" would seem likely.

(Obviously, this ain't my field of expertise, and I'm trying to read
the statutes rapidly, so I can't promise that I'm not blundering.
Again, actual relevant Penal Code link:
http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/cacodes/pen/187-199.html )

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