Arrest Made in Fatal Shooting of Teenage Girl in Hollywood
Police arrested the suspect in the death of a 17-year-old girl in Hollywood. The incident that led to the teenager’s death began near Highland Avenue and Hollywood Boulevard, just after midnight on July 26.
Accounts of the incident allege that about 200 people had gathered to watch an illegal street race early Sunday morning. The suspect, identified as 33-year-old Ramon Roque Monreal from Texas, pulled out a handgun during a confrontation with another person.
Allegedly, as people in the crowd attempted to disarm Monreal, he shot the gun multiple times. When police officers arrived on the scene, they found 17-year-old Alejandra Estrada from Huntington Park on the sidewalk. She was pronounced dead at the scene.
A man who sustained a gunshot wound drove himself to a hospital for treatment. He is expected to survive the gunshot wounds.
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputies located Monreal in Carson, about 25 miles away from where the shootings took place. He has been charged with murder and attempted murder, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.
Murder Charges In California
Homicide is the basic catchall term for describing the taking of another person’s life. Homicide can include murder in the first or second degree, manslaughter, voluntary manslaughter, and involuntary manslaughter.
Murder in the First or Second Degree
For the prosecution to prove that a person is guilty of murder in the first degree, it must prove that the defendant took another person’s life. However, the state must also prove that the taking of the life was deliberate, willful, and premeditated. In other words, the defendant planned to kill that person.
Murder in the second degree is still considered willful, but it lacks the premeditated factor that raises the act of murder in the first degree.
Manslaughter is also the taking of another life. However, the defendant lacked any prior intent to take the person’s life. Manslaughter may be voluntary or involuntary.
Voluntary manslaughter is killing another person when there is no intent to kill the person before the incident occurred. Many people refer to voluntary manslaughter as killing someone in the “heat of passion.” An example might be a bar fight in which one person kills the other person during the fight.
On the other hand, involuntary manslaughter is the unintentional taking of another person’s life while breaking the law or committing an act that could result in death if the person does not exercise due caution. For the homicide to fall into the category of involuntary manslaughter, the crime committed cannot rise to the level of a felony.
A person who causes a death while driving a vehicle can be charged with vehicular manslaughter. There are separate laws that apply when the driver was under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the accident.
Penalties for Homicide Convictions in California
The penalties for murder charges are more severe than the penalties for most manslaughter charges. The reason is that a murder is premeditated, which requires planning and intent. Manslaughter does not have the same malice and forethought, which makes it a lesser crime.
A murder conviction could carry a prison term of 25 years to life. It can also result in life in prison without parole or the death penalty.
However, please do not assume that manslaughter is not a serious crime because it does not rise to the level of murder. The penalties for manslaughter can be severe.
You could face up to 11 years in state prison for a conviction of voluntary manslaughter. Involuntary manslaughter can result in up to four years in state prison for a conviction. Both charges also can result in a fine of up to $10,000 and probation after your release.
Vehicular manslaughter can be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony. Therefore, you could spend up to one year in the Los Angeles County jail or up to six years in state prison, depending on the charges and factors in the case.
Other potential consequences of a manslaughter conviction include:
- Loss of the right to own or possess a firearm
- Revocation or suspension of driving privileges
- Loss of visitation and custody rights
- Suspension of professional licenses
- Denied access to some government welfare programs
- Difficulty obtaining a job or higher education
- Ineligibility to hold specific jobs
In addition to the above consequences, you have a permanent criminal record that follows you for the rest of your life. Whenever anyone performs a background check, such as landlords, employers, and banks, they will see your conviction. If you are charged with another crime, your criminal record could impact your sentencing.
If you are charged with murder or manslaughter, it is in your best interest to talk to a criminal defense lawyer before talking to the police.