Skip to comments.Boys' lives -- fathers in prison, mothers broke
Posted on 03/04/2005 6:51:32 AM PST by AnOldCowhand
The two boys arrested after the slaying of an elderly San Luis Obispo man this week have fathers who are convicted felons and mothers who struggled with little money to raise them.
Both dads have been in and out of County Jail and state prison for the past 15 years, according to court records. They also repeatedly failed to pay child support after the divorces, records showed -- forcing one of the mothers to go on welfare.
The 13-year-old boy accused of using a skateboard to bludgeon to death 87-year-old Gerald "Jerry" O'Malley has been charged with four felonies: murder, elder abuse, burglary and auto theft. His 12-year-old friend is charged with felony auto theft for allegedly stealing O'Malley's Ford Explorer after the killing, but authorities said they don't believe he was involved in the murder.
Both boys made their first appearances in juvenile court on Thursday.
The Tribune is choosing not to name the youths because they are minors being tried in juvenile court. The newspaper is also withholding other identifying information, including the parents' names.
While it is unclear when O'Malley was killed, police found his body Monday night in his residence in the Village Mobile Home Park in San Luis Obispo, across from the Greyhound bus depot. The boys were arrested several hours later near the Amtrak station.
The 13-year-old was born and raised in San Luis Obispo. The boy is the second oldest in a family of six children. He has five sisters.
Court records show that the parents are divorced, but their date of separation is not clear. In 1995, the District Attorney's Office sued the father, who is now 49, for failing to pay child support. A judge later ordered him to pay $639 a month to the mother, who reported in court records that she had no other income.
Starting in 1986, the father pleaded no contest four times to drunken driving in San Luis Obispo County. On two occasions, he had a blood-alcohol concentration nearly three times the legal limit, according to court records.
He was convicted of two felonies -- possessing a controlled substance and inflicting corporal injury on a spouse -- in San Bernardino County in 2002, according to the state Department of Corrections. Those crimes landed him in prison for a year with an additional year of supervised parole until June 2004.
The father served time at Avenal State Prison and Chuckawalla Valley State Prison near the California border with Arizona.
The 12-year-old boy's father also was incarcerated at both of those prisons. It isn't known whether the men knew each other.
The younger boy's family
The 12-year-old boy, who has a younger brother and teen sister, was born near San Jose in 1992. Throughout his life, according to court records, he's lived with his mother -- and sometimes his father -- in Templeton, Paso Robles and San Luis Obispo.
His parents divorced in 2001, around the same time his father went back to prison for at least the third time, according to court documents and prison data.
Because the father had established a pattern of returning to prison, the mother asked a judge to quickly finalize their divorce.
"I would like to move forward with my life and put this behind me, for the sake of my children and myself," she said in a written statement to the court.
With the father away at prison in 2002 and failing to pay child support, the District Attorney's Office pursued him, gaining a judgment that forced him to pay. In those court papers, the mother said she made a $790 monthly income and was trying to support three children while still paying her $340 rent. She had to rely on welfare assistance for help.
The father has been convicted of six felonies and two misdemeanors in San Luis Obispo County. Most of the crimes were felony drug possession and receiving stolen property.
Most recently in 2003 -- as the parents were divorced -- the father pleaded no contest to battery for striking the mother. That misdemeanor led to a six-month County Jail sentence.
The father first went to prison in 1996 -- when his son was 4 -- for receiving stolen property, according to Department of Corrections data. He repeatedly violated his parole, bouncing back and forth between living in San Luis Obispo County and serving time at prisons in Avenal, Wasco and elsewhere around the state.
The father, 34, is on parole after being released Feb. 16, according to the CDC.
A father's influence
The behavior of the 12-year-old's father has left an impression on the boy, according to a former housemate of the youth and his father.
"We are adults. They mimic us," said Daniel Reynolds, who allowed the father to move in with him in Paso Robles in 2003.
"We're the biggest impression a child will have. Now it's transferred to his child," Reynolds said. "He loves his dad to death. He adores him. He doesn't understand why he does what he does. He wants to be like his dad, just like everybody else.
"He needed good guidance to have people teach him what's right -- (his father) doesn't know."
Both boys attended Haw-thorne Elementary School in San Luis Obispo as recently as two years ago, but were no longer enrolled there. They appear to have most recently been associated with the Templeton Unified School District home-school program, according to a law enforcement source who spoke on condition of anonymity.
Court hearings Thursday
The boys, in separate hearings, made their first appearances in a tiny juvenile courtroom Thursday morning.
The 13-year-old, wearing an orange jumpsuit and sitting with his arms crossed, did not speak or enter a plea. The slender 5-foot-2 boy has brown hair with bleached-blond tips. He wore a serious expression during the quick proceeding.
His hearing was continued until Wednesday, when a judge will decide whether he needs to remain in custody at the Juvenile Services Center throughout his court hearings.
The boy's sister and 40-year-old mother sat behind him, sobbing through much of the hearing as Judge Teresa Estrada-Mullaney spoke about court procedures.
As the boy left the courtroom, his mother hugged him, kissed him twice on the cheek and said, "I love you, son."
The boy wrapped his arms around his mother but did not say anything. The mother buried her head in a green scarf as she left the courtroom, flanked by sheriff's bailiffs.
The murder suspect's public defender, Jennifer Fehlman, said the family did not want to speak to reporters and they asked her not to do so, either.
It was not clear what happened at the 12-year-old's hearing because he isn't charged with a major felony and his session was closed to the public.
Yes, by all means, it wasn't really their fault after all.
Here we go!
And they are under 18 - I say we just let em go and tell them not to do it again - liberal values
Maybe Justice Kennedy could adopt these little angels and help them find their humanity.
The juveniles are 12 and 13 years old...
Q: Why did these women spread their legs for guys they knew were bad news??? Sorry to be so blunt, GET A CLUE, LADIES!!!
But they should be put down like sheep-killing dogs.
No, we should execute them.
Can't you just see the tear drops fall from the eyes of the reporters as they typed this? Poor little things, they are as they are because of their upbringing.
Well, you can see that the DA made it all better. He prosecuted the kids' fathers for failure to pay child support while they were in jail.
With such brilliance handling this case, you wonder WHERE it could have possibly gone wrong?
As long as he slept with one eye open, he'd be perfectly fine living with them.
I guess many women just fail to realize that genes are important. I don't understand it. Behaviors and tendencies can be inherited. We don't know exactly what makes a criminal, but clearly something IN THAT PERSON does as we can have two people in the same environment, one turns to crime, the other struggles and makes something of himself.
Maybe we could blame the welfare system....Hmmmm.
Since when does no child support force a woman to go on welfare?? I worked my butt off and supported my daughter without one dime from the government. What a pitiful excuse.
Where's the sympathy for the poor old man who was beaten to death with a skateboard? Sheesh!
THIS solution gets my vote!
you missed the jab at "failed to pay child support" father.
the checkbook had a felony too.
I bet more in depth checking on their fathers will find they are single fathers too.
HOW much longer before the democrats say that a disproportionate of jury convictions affect democrats? That police intentionally arrest democrats more than republicans and democrats are "political prisoners".
We live in a society where kids are spoonfed MTV, Hollywood violence, and the notion that you're not responsible for your actions. Rap song lyrics celebrate violence, esp. toward women. Kids' fashions include pants with no belts...'the jailin' look. In jail your belt is taken away, hence the pants falling down look.
Take the Ten Commandments and God out of our culture, why should we be surprised at the result? Plus, if we know anything, it's that lawlessness and violence is learned behavior. Think about it. The deepest rut in your brain is what you learned at your mother's knee...what she said, yelled, when you were bad or drove her crazy. Years later you find yourself lecturing your own five year old that his/her face will freeze in that expression. So when kids who've been molested get angry (and God knows they have a lot of pent up rage), they tend to molest another child. If they've seen their father beat their mother, they learn that's acceptable behavior. It's a terrible cycle. Women who put up with abuse need to understand what their children are learning. They'll repeat that behavior and worse.
Another aspect to all this social engineering is that if kids go into the 'system', foster care or a state run institution, even a psychiatric facility, they never emerge as the kids you knew. They've been exposed to far worse than whatever they did/endured in the first place, and they've bonded with other perhaps far more violent individuals.
"The boy is the second oldest in a family of six children." "...she had no other income."
GREAT! Six kids and no means of support!! Un-Freakin'-Believable! If you can't support 'em, don't have 'em! GGGRRRR!!
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