Friday, July 23, 2010

Arraignment delayed for dad charged in murder rampage; media blames "custody dispute" (Long Beach, California)

We're always being told how how poor daddies can't get a break in the family court system. What you are NOT told is that some of these "poor daddies" are vicious, sociopathic criminals who shouldn't be allowed to walk free in society, much less have access to helpless children. Dad JOSEPH MERCADO is one of them. Note that a "custody dispute" with the mother is blamed for causing the bloodbath that left three people dead and two injured. So we have a guy who opens fire with an AK-47, killing the mom, her brother, and her father. Two others were injured, including the mom's mother. Dad also tried to set the house on fire, forcing the others in the house (which included children) to escape through the roof (including, one presumes, the baby that was subject to the "custody dispute.") Wow, that's really showing the love, Daddy.

Let's get real here. A "custody dispute" was NOT the cause of this father's rampage. Harassing and bullying the mother for "control" of her infant was just another tactic in Daddy's sick abuse agenda. That's all.

Arraignment delayed for Hawaiian Gardens multiple killing suspect
By Tracy Manzer, Staff Writer
Posted: 07/22/2010 01:14:05 PM PDT

LONG BEACH - A 26-year-old man charged with capital murder for a shooting rampage at his ex-girlfriend's Hawaiian Gardens home that left three people dead and two more injured last May has yet to enter a plea to the charge.

Defendant Joseph Mercado was scheduled to be arraigned Thursday morning at the Norwalk Superior Court, but the matter was postponed once more as Mercado's defense team awaits crime scene photographs and autopsy reports.

Court Commission Michael Schuur expressed concern and surprise when he learned the defense was still awaiting basic discovery in the case, which alleges three counts of murder with the special circumstance of multiple murders, a factor that could make Mercado eligible for the death penalty.

The prosecution explained the hold-up was due to reports being compiled by the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department and the Los Angeles County Coroner's office.

"I think it's ridiculous they can't generate the reports in a reasonable amount of time," Schuur said.

The arraignment was postponed until Sept. 7, when all the outstanding reports are expected to be completed and turned over to the defense.

Visibly upset by the latest lag in the case was the family of the victims, who have attended all court dates since Mercado's arrest.

In addition to the murder counts, Mercado is charged with two counts of attempted murder, shooting at an inhabited dwelling, assault on a peace officer with an assault weapon, arson of an inhabited structure, child abuse and first-degree burglary with the special allegation that he personally used a firearm, according to the criminal complaint.

Mercado allegedly broke into his ex-girlfriend's home in the 21000 block of Devlin Avenue early May 6 and opened fire with an AK-47 rifle.

Killed in the shooting were 23-year-old Serena Tarin, the mother of Mercado's infant son; Tarin's 21-year-old brother, Alfredo Tarin Jr.; and their father, Alfredo Tarin Sr.

Two other family members were wounded, including Tarin's mother, Lucy Tarin, who was critically injured.

Mercado also allegedly tried to set the home ablaze, dousing the interior with gasoline, but failed to get the fire started.

He was shot by a Los Angeles County Sheriff's deputy as Mercado emerged from the house before 4 a.m. Mercado was treated and placed under arrest and is being held without bail, authorities said.

Sheriff's investigators said the slayings may have stemmed from a custody dispute between Mercado and his former girlfriend.

The suspect, they said, shot a lock off a door at the home and then went from room to room, killing his victims.

Six other family members, including some children, were able to escape the rampage by climbing out an upstairs window and hiding on the roof until deputies arrived, authorities said.

Prosecutors will decide at a later date whether they will seek the death penalty, said Jane Robison, the DA's spokeswoman.