2-to-1 Vote Upholds 2017 Van Houten Reversal

Friday, September 20th, 2019

Sept. 20 – In a 2-to-1 vote, California’s 2nd District Court of Appeal upheld Jerry Brown’s reversal of Leslie Van Houten’s 2017 parole grant.

Click here to read the appellate court opinion


Newsom’s Reversal of Van Houten Parole Grant to be Reviewed

Friday, September 20th, 2019

Sept 19 – Governor Gavin Newsom’s reversal of Leslie Van Houten’s most recent parole recommendation will be reviewed by the Los Angeles County Superior Court.

Van Houten received her third parole recommendation from the California Board of Parole Hearings in January. The decision was reversed by Newsom in June, prompting Van Houten’s attorney Richard Pfeiffer to file a petition asking the Superior Court to rule that Van Houten would not be an unreasonable risk if placed on parole.

Last week, Judge William Ryan ordered the Attorney General to show cause as to why Van Houten’s petition should not be granted. The Attorney General will have until October 11th to file a return opposing the petition.

Van Houten is still waiting on California’s 2nd District Court of Appeal to make a ruling on Jerry Brown’s reversal of her 2017 parole recommendation. That decision is due sometime next month.


Appellate Court Delays Van Houten Ruling

Tuesday, July 9th, 2019

Jul. 9 – The appellate court panel that is reviewing Leslie Van Houten’s writ of Habeas Corpus challenging Jerry Brown’s reversal of her September 2017 parole recommendation, today gave themselves 90 more days to publish an opinion.

The panel heard oral arguments in April and were due to rule at the end of the month. However, today, Presiding Justice Frances Rothschild ordered “that submission of the above-entitled matter on April 29, 2019 is vacated due to another member of the panel becoming the lead author. The matter stands resubmitted as of this date.”

The panel will now have until October to rule on the matter.


Bruce Davis Granted Parole for Sixth Time

Friday, June 28th, 2019

Jun. 28 – Bruce Davis was found suitable for parole at his 32nd parole hearing, held today at the California Men’s Colony in San Luis Obispo.

The parole board’s decision will undergo a 120-day review, after which Governor Gavin Newsom will have 30 days to reverse, modify, affirm or decline to review the decision.

Davis, 76, serving a life term for his role in the 1969 murders of Gary Hinman and Donald “Shorty” Shea, has previously been recommended for parole in the past five consecutive hearings, but has seen all five of those recommendations reversed by the Governor’s office during the executive review process.

Governor Newsom will have until November 25th to weigh in on the decision.


Van Houten Challenges Newsom Denial in Superior Court

Wednesday, June 26th, 2019

Jun. 26 – Leslie Van Houten has filed a writ of Habeas Corpus in the Superior Court challenging Gavin Newsom’s reversal of her parole recommendation earlier this year.

The California Board of Parole Hearings gave Van Houten her third parole recommendation at a hearing held on January 30th. Newsom reversed the decision earlier this month stating that Van Houten lacked insight and must take additional steps that demonstrate she will never return to the type of submission or violence again.

Van Houten’s attorney, Richard Pfeiffer, finds her repeated denials inconsistent.

“This was the third time [Leslie] was granted parole and the third time a governor has reversed that finding. When [Leslie] successfully addresses reasons for a reversal, the governors come up with new reasons that should have been asserted at the first reversal,” wrote Pfeiffer. “This moving target strategy is completely unfair, it prevents [Leslie] from being able to address all of the governors’ concerns in a timely manner, resulting in her continued incarceration.”

Pfeiffer says he has plans to request an evidentiary hearing and have Van Houten brought to the Superior Court in Los Angeles to testify in front of the judge considering her petition.

Van Houten is still waiting on California’s 2nd District Court of Appeal to make a ruling on Jerry Brown’s reversal of her 2017 parole recommendation. That decision is due sometime next month.