Prosecutors in Ventura County won a first-degree murder conviction against Jane Laut, wife of former Olympic track and field standout Dave Laut. After four days of deliberation, the jury found Laut guilty of the murder charge and the special enhancement of personally and intentionally discharging a weapon. Laut was accused of shooting her husband in August 2009.
Domestic violence defense used in murder trial
Dave Laut, who was the athletic director at Hueneme High School at the time of his death, won a bronze medal in the 1984 Summer Olympic games, held in Los Angeles. Jane Laut claimed that she was the victim of domestic violence throughout the couple’s 29-year marriage. She testified that she had been beaten, raped and abused habitually, and that he had brandished a gun and threatened to shoot her, the couple’s 10-year-old son, and the couple’s two dogs on the night he died.
Jane Laut testified that she and her husband fought over control of the weapon, and that she could not remember exactly what happened during the physical altercation. Prosecutors argued that the evidence did not support Jane Laut’s version of the events of that night, pointing out that Dave Laut had been shot six times at point-blank range in the back of the head.
If you’ve been charged with murder, you need the assistance of an experienced Ventura criminal defense attorney like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has practiced criminal defense in Southern California for more than 30 years, and handles tough felony cases like murder.
Mr. Helfend will fight aggressively for your rights and freedoms, and will work to get the charges against you reduced or dropped. Prosecutors will work hard to make you believe that the evidence against you is solid. Often, their cases have significant holes, which they hope that you, your attorney or the jury won’t notice. Mr. Helfend exposes the weaknesses in the prosecutor’s case against you. He helps the judge and jury develop reasonable doubt that the police and prosecutors have charged the right person, or that the evidence actually supports the charges against you.
Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (805) 273-5611, (310) 456-3317 or (818) 591-2809 for an immediate consultation on your Ventura County murder case.
Photo Credit: Cathy Kaplan, via FreeImages.com