Gov. Newsom Grants Clemency to 21 Convicted Murders, Gang Members & Drive-By Shooters

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Governor Gavin Newson has taken the left coast further left than anyone has in modern history. One of his first decisions as governor was to spare all 800 death row inmates by halting any executions during his term in office. No matter how heinous their crime, his moratorium covers rapists, mass murderers, even those who tortured and maimed young children.

Now, eight months into his first term, Governor Newsom decided to commute the sentences of 21 prison inmates: 14 convicted of murder or attempted murder and 7 whose crimes earned them life sentences without parole.

What makes Governor Newsom’s latest clemency decision even more confusing is that over the past year, he has complained mightily about gun violence, yet 19 of the 21 he granted clemency committed their violent crimes using a firearm.

Where is the compassion for the crime victims and their families? They have missed years of birthdays, graduations, marriages, births of grandchildren and more because these criminals callously took the lives of their sons, daughters or other family members’ lives. These people will never get over the loss of their loved ones. You just don’t. You learn to move forward and you cope, but that hole in your heart, the deep sense of loss, those never go away.

Gang members who murdered and committed drug-related crimes; callous, predatory criminals who committed drive-by shootings, armed robberies, carjacking, domestic violence, home invasions; spree killers – These are the felons Governor Newsom has chosen to set free and shield.

Once again, Governor Newsom seems to be placing his personal liberal agenda over the considered decisions of the courts and the will of the people of California. Once again, these families are victimized – This time by Governor Newsom.


Former Los Angeles City Councilman and Los Angeles Police Department Sergeant - Dennis Zine wrote in Fox and Hounds Daily:

Of the 21 commutations granted by Governor Newsom, I have pulled 7 to illustrate what type of convicted and armed Felony criminals the Governor thinks should be returned to the communities and streets of California.  Ask yourself if you think Justice is served by the actions of Governor Newsom.

  • Alex Barajas.  In 2005, 21- year – old Alex shot Arthur Gomez, a rival gang member, and Joseph Avila.  On May 31, 2007, Barajas was sentenced to 15 years to life each for two counts of attempted murder.
  • Allen Burnett.  In 1992, 18- year -old Allen Burnett and two crime partners carjacked Joseph Kondrath.  While discussing their next steps, Mr. Burnett refused to shoot Mr. Kondrath. One of the crime partners then shot and killed Mr.  Kondrath. 
  • Jaime Cabrales.  In 2007, Jaime Cabrales drove his car near a group of four men on a porch, and his crime partner, a passenger in the car, shot at them, injuring Jose Ocampo. 
  • Andrew Crater.  In 1995, 20 -year -old Andrew Crater and his crime partner committed a string of armed robberies.  During the final robbery, Mr. Crater’s crime partner shot and killed James Pantages.
  • Keefe Dashiell.  In 2007, 19 -year- old Keefe Dashiell, riding in a friend’s car, shot at two women traveling in another car.  He struck and injured Alexis Carter. He committed the offense, which was gang – related.
  • Leonia Esteem.  In 2005, 47 -year -old Leonia Esteem and her boyfriend Mitchell Andrews got into an argument, during which Ms.  Esteem shot Mr. Andrews multiple times, injuring him.
  • Luiz Velez.  In 1991, Luiz Velez shot and killed Harold Payne, an armed transport guard, during a robbery.