Monday, April 11, 2016

Esteban Nuñez Released from Prison After Manslaughter Sentence Was Drastically Reduced by Arnold Schwarzenegger

This story really bothers me.

Esteban Nuñez is the son of former California Assembly Speaker Fabian Nuñez, a close political ally of former Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.

The background is here, at LAT from last year, "Appeals court upholds Schwarzenegger's clemency for Nuñez son."

And here's the latest, "Esteban Nunez is released from prison after his sentence was drastically reduced by Schwarzenegger."

And see especially, "As Esteban Nuñez nears release from prison, victim's family remains outraged":
The slain student’s mother did the math a long time ago, so the news she recently received — that convicted killer Esteban Nuñez would soon go free after less than six years in prison — came as no real surprise.

That makes it no easier, Kathy Santos said, to know that a high-level political favor is sending him home at age 27, as her son lies in a grave.

“It makes you sick that something like this can happen, and you have no power,” said Santos, whose 22-year-old son, Luis, a San Diego Mesa College student, was killed by a knife to the heart.

Prosecutors said Nuñez and a co-defendant, both armed with knives, acted in concert in the attack that killed the unarmed Santos at San Diego State University in October 2008. Charged with murder, the defendants had faced the possibility of life in prison if they went to trial and lost. Instead, they pleaded guilty to lesser charges of voluntary manslaughter and assault. A judge gave them 16 years in prison.

Nuñez had a powerful father, former Assembly Speaker Fabian Nuñez, and the father had a powerful ally, then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who — on his last day in office in 2011 — announced he was reducing the sentence to seven years. With good behavior, it would turn out to be less than six.

“Of course you help a friend,” Schwarzenegger later said, a remark that deepened widespread outrage over the commutation, which was reflected in editorials and denunciations by Republicans and Democrats alike...