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Monday, September 29, 2008

[CA] Ex-Chief Gundersen beats 24 felonies, guilty on 11 charges of battery

The protection order is lifted and he's probably out of jail now.

...A JURY OF 7 WOMEN AND 5 MEN ACQUITTED HIM OF 24 [FELONY] COUNTS OF SPOUSAL RAPE WITH AN INTOXICANT AND ATTEMPTING TO DISSUADE A WITNESS... BUT THE JURY CONVICTED THE FORMER POLICE CHIEF ON 11 MISDEMEANOR COUNTS OF BATTERY, VIOLATING A COURT ORDER AND ILLEGALLY POSSESSING A SUBMACHINE GUN AND A PISTOL WITH A SILENCER...

(Previous entries on the blog here)

GUNDERSEN TO BE RELEASED FROM JAIL TONIGHT
The Eureka Reporter
Sep 29 2008
Humboldt County Superior Court Judge W. Bruce Watson reduced former Blue Lake Police Chief David Gundersen's bail from $1.25 million to $50,000 and Gundersen's attorney Russell Clanton said that Gundersen will be posting bail and be released from jail tonight. The decision comes less than a week after a jury of seven women and five men acquitted him of 24 counts of spousal rape with an intoxicant and attempting to dissuade a witness. The jury did find him guilty of 11 counts of battery (relating to nude photographs taken of his wife Darcie Seal), two firearm-related charges and violating an emergency protective order. On Friday, Watson dismissed the emergency protective order placed on Gundersen follow his preliminary hearing in April, which prohibited him from contacting Seal... [Full article here]

LAST WEEK:


JUDGMENT: JURY ACQUITS GUNDERSEN ON RAPE CHARGES, CONVICTS ON BATTERY AND GUNS

Eureka Times-Standard
Thadeus Greenson tgreenson@times-standard.com.
09/25/2008
EUREKA -- Former Blue Lake Police Chief David Ray Gundersen was acquitted of two dozen spousal rape charges in Humboldt County Superior Court Wednesday, but convicted of 11 lesser charges of battery and two charges of illegal firearms possession. A jury of seven women and five men found Gundersen not guilty on charges of raping his spouse with the use of an intoxicant and attempting to dissuade the victim of a crime, but the jury convicted the former police chief on 11 misdemeanor counts of battery, violating a court order and illegally possessing a submachine gun and a pistol with a silencer. Together, the firearms charges carry a maximum sentence of three years and eight months in state prison or a fine of $20,000. Gundersen's convictions on the 11 battery charges each carry a sentence of up to six months in jail, a fine of $2,000, or both. The 24 spousal rape counts Gundersen initially faced would have carried a sentence of 72 to 192 years in prison. Humboldt County Superior Court Judge Bruce Watson set an Oct. 22 date for Gundersen's sentencing. The felony firearms convictions effectively end Gundersen's career as a law enforcement officer, and the misdemeanor battery convictions would make it illegal for him to possess firearms.... It remains unclear exactly how Wednesday's verdict will translate into sentencing, as legal experts contacted by the Times-Standard said much of Gundersen's sentence will be left to the discretion of the judge... [Full article here]

GUNDERSEN'S BATTERY CONVICTIONS MAY COME UNDER FIRE
Eureka Times-Standard
Thadeus Greenson tgreenson@times-standard.com
09/26/2008
Former Blue Lake Police Chief David Gundersen's 11 convictions on charges of misdemeanor battery may be tossed out in the near future, according to legal experts... battery charges are misdemeanors carrying a one year statute of limitations. Because the jury chose to convict on the battery charges in counts 1 through 11, counts that allegedly took place in January through November of 2006, it appears the statute of limitations would have run out, and that the convictions may have to be overturned as a result. "The prosecution has a real problem," said University of California Berkeley School of Law professor Franklin Zimring, adding that the defense will likely file a motion to vacate the convictions. "That means that either the jury wasn't aware of (the statute of limitations for misdemeanors), or that there's somebody brilliant on the jury who found a way to reprimand the chief without really convicting him." For his part, District Attorney Paul Gallegos said he believes the statute of limitations clock, even on misdemeanors, doesn't start running until law enforcement knows or reasonably should have known of the offense... [Full article here]

PROTECTIVE ORDER REVOKED IN GUNDERSEN CASE

Eureka Times-Standard
Thadeus Greenson tgreenson@times-standard.com
09/27/2008
Humboldt County Superior Court Judge Bruce Watson revoked a court protective order Friday that forbade former Blue Lake Police Chief David Gundersen from having any contact with his wife, Darcie Seal... The protective order had been in place since Gundersen's preliminary hearing... [Full article here]

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