Stabbed in the Back by Softness on Crime

City News Service reports:

A man who was sentenced to 196 years to life in prison for his role in a series of San Diego drive-by slayings, but was released last year due to changes to state law regarding juvenile defendants, was ordered Monday to stand trial for allegedly robbing and stabbing a stranger in El Cajon.

Dejon Satterwhite, 32, is accused of stabbing a man in the back on March 11, about six months after he was released from state prison.

Satterwhite was previously convicted of two counts of murder and three counts of attempted murder for a trio of gang-related shootings that he and three co-defendants committed in 2004, when Satterwhite was a teenager.

Satterwhite was tried and convicted in adult court, according to the San Diego County District Attorney’s Office, which said changes to state law allowed him to be released last October despite being handed a life sentence.

According to the DA’s Office, those changes included the passage of Proposition 57, which requires transfer hearings for juvenile defendants 14 or older to determine if their case should be transferred to adult court, and SB 1391, which bars defendants under 16 from being tried as adults or receiving transfer hearings.

Since Satterwhite was 15 at the time of the murders, his convictions were converted into juvenile convictions.

Under prior law, district attorneys could file cases against teen criminals directly in adult court for certain violent crimes, including murder. Proposition 57 changed that rule to let the juvenile court judge decide if the case would go to adult court. That was bad enough, but then SB 1391 ruled out transfer to adult court altogether for the 14s and 15s. CJLF argued that this was an unconstitutional amendment of Proposition 57 in O.G. v. Superior Court, but the California Supreme Court upheld it. See this post by Kym Stapleton last February.

Mercy and leniency have their places in criminal law, but excessive leniency to the guilty is inevitably cruelty to the innocent. The victim in this case was no angel. He was apparently involved in an illegal drug transaction. But he did nothing to deserve being stabbed. His blood is on the hands of Jerry Brown, George Soros, and the California Legislature.