Last Thursday, Bruce Beresford-Redman, the former producer of the popular show “Survivor” was sentenced to 12 years in a Mexican prison for the 2010 murder of his wife. Monica Burgos Beresford-Redman’s body was found in a sewer cistern in a hotel resort in Cancun, Mexico, where the couple was on a family vacation with their children. The producer was extradited to Mexico in 2012 for trial. Thursday, the producer was found guilty and sentenced to 12 years in prison.
The California Penal Code defines murder as the unlawful killing of a human being, or a fetus, with malice aforethought. The required “malice” may be expressed or implied. Express malice is when there is a deliberate intention to unlawfully take away the life of a fellow creature. Malice is implied where no considerable provocation appears, or when the circumstances attending the killing show an abandoned and malignant heart.
No other mental state need be shown to establish the mental state of “malice aforethought” when it is shown that the killing resulted from the intentional doing of an act with express or implied malice. Neither an awareness of the obligation to act within the general body of the laws regulating society nor acting despite such awareness is included within the definition of malice. Simply, mistake of law or fact does not negate the mental state required for murder.
Murder, under California law is divided into first and second degree. First degree murder is all murder which is perpetrated by means of a destructive device or explosive, a weapon of mass destruction, knowing use of ammunition designed primarily to penetrate metal or armor, poison, lying in wait, torture, or by any other kind of willful, deliberate, and premeditated killing, or which is committed in the perpetration of, or attempt to perpetrate, arson, rape, carjacking, robbery, burglary, mayhem, kidnapping, train wrecking, or specific sex offenses, or any murder which is perpetrated by means of discharging a firearm from a motor vehicle, intentionally at another person outside of the vehicle with the intent to inflict death, is murder of the first degree.
If a defendant is found guilty of murder in the first degree he or she faces a death sentence, or 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.
All other unlawful killings of a human being are second degree murder. Every person found guilty of second degree murder shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for a term of 15 years to life.
The punishment increases to a term of life without the possibility of parole if the victim was a peace officer who was killed while engaged in the performance of his or her duties, and the defendant knew or reasonably should have known that the victim was a peace officer engaged in the performance of his or her duties, and the defendant specifically intended to kill or inflict injury on the peace officer.
Murder is a serious charge for which representation is needed. Attorney Ambrosio Rodriguez is a former homicide district attorney who has years of experience trying murder cases. He understands the law and can help with your case. Call The Rodriguez Law Group today.
The Rodriguez Law Group
626 Wilshire Blvd #460
Los Angeles, CA 90017