Three Men Arrested in Fatal Drug Deal

20January
2013

The state of Arizona has a statutory law known as the felony murder rule.  The felony murder rule holds that a murder that occurs during the course of or in the immediate flight from, the commission of specific crimes is considered murder in the first degree.  Unfortunately for three valley men, when one member of their group was shot and killed in an attempt to steal drugs and money, they found themselves charged under this rule, and now face the crime of first-degree murder.

Glendale Police reported that Josh Rasmussen, 19, Justin Whitley, 19, Justin Drennan, 21, and an unnamed 17-year-old, made plans to meet with a 17-year-old drug dealer to purchase drugs.  When the group met, the 17-year-old pulled out what appeared to be a hand gun – police report the weapon turned out to be a BB gun- and pointed it at the drug dealer in attempt to steal not only the drugs, but money as well.  Tragically for this young man, the drug dealer pulled out his own handgun and shot the alleged robber in self-defense.

The critically injured juvenile was taken to a local hospital, and then lifted to a trauma center, where he was later pronounced dead.

The alleged drug dealer was released to his parents after medical treatment for minor injuries, and is now facing second-degree murder and drug related charges.

Rasmussen, Whitley and Drennan, are now facing first-degree murder charges, due to the felony murder rule, although these suspects were not the ones who pulled the trigger of the gun that ended the juvenile’s life.

If you have been charged with homicide, it is very important to hire a  seasoned, knowledgeable, professional Phoenix homicide attorney, who can work hard to reduce your sentence and protect your rights.

Posted in Violent Crime |

Police Arrest Two in Stabbing of 18-Year-Old Woman

6January
2013

On December 29th, Lorena Sandra Uzueta attended two parties in Glendale.  According to police investigators, at the first party, Uzueta  helped break up a fight before leaving to another party.  Unfortunately for Uzueta, she became involved in an altercation at this party that tragically led to her demise.

Investigators report that at this party, Uzueta was allegedly attacked and stabbed by a seventeen-year-old female, and afterwards was also attacked by 19-year-old Alexis Nicole Hernandez.  While Hernandez both fought with and held Uzueta, the 17-year-old suspect stabbed Uzueta a second time, and then both suspects fled from the crime scene.

Uzueta’s friends placed her in a vehicle and were driving her to a local hospital when they were involved in a collision.  Officers stated that after the collision, the driver of the car fled leaving Uzueta in the damaged vehicle.

Police discovered Uzueta while investigating the reported accident  and arranged her transportation to a nearby hospital where she later died.

Police investigators were able to find both Hernandez and the 17-year-old girl.  After speaking with witnesses of the fatal stabbing, police took both females into custody, charging the juvenile with first degree murder, and Hernandez with aggravated assault.

The juvenile’s name will not be released by law enforcement officials unless she is charged as an adult.

No matter whether you are sentenced as an adult or a juvenile, a  conviction for first degree murder carries severe penalties.  If convicted in Arizona of this crime, you can spend your life in prison and  prosecutors may seek the death penalty, as well. 

If you or a family member have been charged with murder, it is critical to hire a seasoned, professional, and competent criminal defense lawyer.  An experienced Arizona criminal defense attorney has the necessary skills and  knowledge of Arizona laws to not only provide an aggressive defense, but  to protect your rights, as well.

Original story can be found here.

Posted in Violent Crime |