At this very moment, Orange County's Joseph Coronado Martinez is sitting in a California prison and he's immensely frustrated, in part, because he's not attracted to his neighbors.
Martinez–a 64-year-old grandfather with a 5-foot-3 and 200 pound physique–thinks the criminal justice system treated him unfairly by locking him up for sex crimes.
It's a fascinating sentiment given the sweetheart deal he received.
Pursued by the Orange County District Attorney's office, Martinez initially pleaded not guilty to two felony counts involving continually molesting his second-grade granddaughter for two years.
But he changed his mind after the 2011 trial began in Superior Court Judge Steven D. Bromberg's Santa Ana courtroom.
In exchange for getting one of the charges–lewd and lascivious acts with a minor–dropped, he hoped his punishment would be easy.
Bromberg, a former Newport Beach Republican politician, surely wasn't tough. He could have sentenced Martinez to 12 years in prison. Instead, he handed the pedophile the lowest possible incarceration time available for continuous sexual abuse of a child: six years.
But Martinez didn't appreciate the gift. He is arguing that Bromberg's punishment was too harsh. In part because he'd never been convicted of any other crimes, he thinks he should have been allowed to walk out of the courthouse a free man under just probation after admitting that he sexually abused his son's daughter–he kissed her mouth and vagina, fondled her butt and breasts, and made the girl masturbate him, according to court records.
This defendant's disgusted son had recorded his father admitting to the crimes and promising he wouldn't molest again, a claim made laughable after another female relative came forward and admitted that he'd molested her too when she was a child.
After arriving in prison, Martinez appealed and this week a California Court of Appeal ruled that Bromberg's sentencing order had been justified.
In a nine-page opinion written by Justice Raymond Ikola on behalf of himself and justice Richard Aronson and David Thompson, the appellate court determined that the evidence proved Martinez had abused his status as a grandfather, continually molested the girl until he was caught and remains a threat to her safety.
Upshot: Martinez, now a registered sex offender, will remain locked in a place where there are no little girls: the California Institution For Men at Chino.
(OCWeekly.com's "Citizen of the Week!" periodically highlights the depths of human depravity in Orange County, California.)
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