Last week, a popular Venice youth pastor was killed when a single bullet
struck him. He was standing with his girlfriend on a street in Venice
when a car with four males drove up to him. After jeering at his girlfriend,
they shouted a gang name and killed 23-year-old O.D. with one shot. Authorities
are saying that the act appeared to be random and are offering a large
reward for anyone with further information. So far, there are at least
two people in custody regarding this incident. His brother has stated
that his death was unfair. He was not a member of a gang and did not have
a criminal record and "died for something he stood against."
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According to California Penal Code, Section 187-190, murder is defined
as the unlawful killing of a human being with malice aforethought. This
means that the killing was not accidental, but done with the express intention
of taking the life of the victim. Under this law, malice can be express
or implied. Express means that they deliberately intended to take the
victim's life and implied means that the circumstances surrounding
the crime showed that the individual was acting malignantly.
If the four men in this case are found and prosecuted for the killing of
O.D., they could be facing extremely serious penalties. Should they be
convicted of first degree murder, they could be sent to prison for life
without the possibility of parole or given the death sentence. The penalties
for second degree murder are not as serious; however, it could still result
in anywhere from 15 years in prison to life in prison. Murder, manslaughter,
or any other violent crime is taken very seriously by law enforcement
and so you need a strong representative on your side if you are facing
these types of charges.