SATICOY : Defense Says Killings Not Premeditated
The drive-by slaying of two Saticoy men was not premeditated and therefore was not first-degree murder, a defense attorney said Wednesday in the trial of Edward (Tony) Throop.
Throop, 18, is accused of being the triggerman in an April 7 drive-by shooting that killed Javier Ramirez, 18, and Rolando Martinez, 20, in the Cabrillo Village neighborhood of Saticoy. Deputy Dist. Atty. Peter D. Kossoris told the jury Tuesday that Throop and three other teen-agers planned the shooting because two of them had grudges against a Cabrillo Village gang.
But in her opening remarks Wednesday, Deputy Public Defender Christina Briles said that the slayings were not planned and that they came about because the boys were drunk and happened to have a rifle in their car trunk. One of the boys who will testify for the prosecution has said they had “no clear concept of what they were going to do” when they arrived at Cabrillo Village, Briles said.
She said Throop has had an alcohol problem since age 14 and had drunk an entire bottle of tequila the night of the shooting. Throop did not realize he had killed anyone until the next day and started crying when he learned of the deaths, she said.
“That is hardly the character of a hardened criminal,” Briles told the jury. “Keep in mind that we are talking about children.”
Briles denied Kossoris’ assertions that Throop is a gang member and that gang-related vengeance was a motive.