Police chief's son, 2 others enter no-contest pleas in robbery case

Merced Sun Star || 16-Oct-2009

Defendants sentenced to a year in jail, probation

MERCED - The son of Dos Palos Police Chief Barry Mann and two other young men pleaded no contest in court Monday to robbing a teenager in Merced earlier this year.

Nicholas Mann, 18, Stanley Mosby, 18, and Roger Davis, 23, were each sentenced to one year in county jail for the incident, which happened June 5 in the 500 block of Rambler Road.

Each of the three defendants pleaded to one felony count of robbery in front of Merced County Superior Court Presiding Judge John Kirihara. In addition to the year in jail, Kirihara sentenced them to three years felony probation. Kirihara suspended a three-year prison sentence for each of the defendants.

The case of a fourth suspect allegedly involved in the robbery, a 16-year-old boy, is being handled separately in juvenile court.

Deputy District Attorney Matt Serratto said all of the defendants either had minimal or no criminal backgrounds. Although Serratto said the crime was “a pretty egregious offense,” he was satisfied with the judge’s decision.

“Given their minimal records, it’s not time to send them to prison,” Serratto said. “You give somebody a chance to succeed on probation. That’s what the judge is doing here, and I think it’s reasonable.”

Barry Mann said Tuesday he hopes the decision will cause his son and the others to re-evaluate their life choices. “I hope they use this opportunity provided to them to make better decisions,” Mann said. “I also hope the victim feels he was provided justice out of this.”

The Dos Palos police chief was not present at any of his son’s court dates.

According to prosecutors, the robbery happened shortly after 11 p.m. as the 17-year-old male victim was walking on Rambler Road near M Street. The four defendants were walking westbound on Rambler Road, while the victim was walking toward the group.

The victim told police that Mosby hit him in the back of the head, while the others started grabbing and pushing him. The 16-year-old suspect then pulled a .38 caliber revolver on the victim, and the group robbed him of his backpack, cell phone and other items.

Serratto said Mosby tossed the victim’s backpack into some bushes near the scene, while Davis threw the cell phone into a trash can in Applegate Park. Police only recovered the victim’s backpack. After being robbed, the victim walked to the 2800 block of Park Avenue and called police. All four defendants were arrested shortly thereafter.

The victim did not have any visible injuries, Serratto said.

Defense attorneys Jeffrey Tenenbaum and Hayden Smith, who represented Davis and Mann respectively, gave a slightly different version of events. According to Smith and Tenenbaum, the victim was walking toward the group on Rambler Road and bumped into one of the defendants.

An exchange of words between the victim and the group escalated into a physical fight.

Tenenbaum said Davis, his client, denies participating in the robbery. “He’s very sorry for what happened, but he didn’t take part in any of this,” Tenenbaum said. “But he acknowledged being there, and he accepts that he must take some responsibility.”

Smith said his client, Nicholas Mann, had “absolutely” no idea the 16-year-old juvenile was carrying a gun, and the confrontation quickly “spiraled out of control.”

Still, Mann is deeply remorseful, Smith said. “He’s incredibly ashamed and sorry to his parents,” Smith said. “He’s absolutely in a world of shame over this whole thing.”

Mosby’s attorney David Capron couldn’t be reached Tuesday.

Mann and Mosby will probably serve a sentence of about eight months in jail, Smith said, if they keep clean disciplinary records. Davis, who has remained in jail since June, will probably be released by the beginning of next year.

The crime counts as a strike on all three of the defendants’ records.

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