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News Scan

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One of FBI's Ten Most Wanted Apprehended in Mexico: Brandon Lowrey of Reuters reports Jose Luis Saenz, one of the FBI's ten most wanted since 2009, was apprehended in Mexico and brought back to Los Angeles to face charges in four separate murders. Saenz allegedly killed a Los Angeles man over a drug debt in 2008. He is also being charged with shooting and killing two rival gang members in 1998, and kidnapping, raping, and killing the mother of his child when she threatened to turn him in for the killings. Saenz is an enforcer for a Mexican drug cartel and a gang member. If convicted, he is eligible for the death penalty.

RI Thrill Killer Will Be Paroled: The Associated Press reports convicted murderer Alfred Brissette will be paroled next month. Brissette pleaded no contest in Rhode Island for the 1999 thrill killing of a woman. According to State v. Girard, Alfred Brissette and Marc Girard killed their victim after luring her into woods with the promise of cocaine. Initially, Brissette hit the victim in the head with a lug wrench multiple times. Then, Girard persuaded her to remain calm and promised to take her to a hospital. The duo then struck her with a shovel, dragged her back to the car, repeatedly beat her with fists and the lug wrench, attempted to paralyze her by beating her in the spine, and ultimately Girard hit her in the head a last three times to 'put her out of her misery.' Brissette was sentenced to 35 years in prison and was not set for parole until 2034. However, with good behavior he shaved 20 years off his sentence.

Killer Gets 8 Years for Sending Judge Fake Anthrax Letter: Lawrence Buser of the Commercial Appeal reports U.S. District Judge Jon McCalla sentenced Marshall Dewayne Williams to eight years Monday for sending a fake anthrax letter to U.S. District Judge Daniel Breen in 2008. Williams did so in protest of the 109-year sentence he received for the 1984 killing of his stepfather with a pipebomb in Texas. Judge Breen had denied many of his appeals in the case. Williams wanted to get back into court before a jury to argue his case. He had been sentenced to five years in 2009 for the fake anthrax letter. His conviction had been upheld on appeal, but he was granted a new sentencing trial.

CA Using 5-Year-Old Recidivism Data to Justify Realignment:
Brian Joseph, Sacramento correspondent for the Orange County Register, reports California prison recidivism rates remain high despite a slight decline. The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation compares the rates from 2007-08 to 2006-07 to establish the decline, from 65.1 percent to 63.1 percent, respectively. Criminal Justice Legal Foundation President Michael Rushford is concerned that five-year-old data is being used to justify AB109. Rushford points to increases in crime all over the state in the last year to show "the state's formula ...  doesn't work."    

Ill. Husband's Who Killed Wife, Three Kids Sentenced:
Don Babwin of the Associated Press reports Christopher Vaughn was sentenced to four life sentences without the possibility of parole Tuesday. Vaughn was convicted this September of killing his wife and three children in 2007. He initially faced the death penalty, but Illinois since abolished capital punishment. He had killed his wife and young children because they stood in the way of his dream life of subsisting in the Canadian wilderness. Details of the murders are in this news scan.

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