Justice at close range

From a murdered spouse to an endangered toddler, Sacramento prosecutors closed out several cases involving threats from those who victims knew well

Over the past two months, the Sacramento County district attorney’s office has secured a number of convictions against spouses, family members and other intimate partners responsible for shocking violence.

On April 18, George Gomez was convicted of trying to murder his wife in 2018. Deputy District Attorney Monica Robinson, a member of the DA’s domestic violence unit, presented evidence to a jury that showed Gomez attacked his spouse with a weapon before trying to strangle her to death. According to a DA’s release, the victim escaped with a number of injuries to her face.

Gomez was convicted of attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon and making criminal threats. He is awaiting sentencing. He faces a maximum term of 13 years in state prison.

On April 4, Markees Brown was convicted of three counts of attempted murder. A DA’s release says Brown was dating a young woman who was in an ongoing conflict with her family. Deputy District Attorney Nicholas Johnson, a member of the DA’s TARGET unit, for “targeting armed recidivist gang enforcement team,” convinced a jury that Brown decided to settle the dispute with violence.

On Sept. 11, 2017, Brown opened fire on family members of his girlfriend as they stood on their front yard in Strawberry Manor, a DA’s release states. Bullets sailed over a 4-year-old child. No one was hit.

A judge ultimately sentenced Brown, who already had three prior “strikes” for first-degree burglary, to 258 years in state prison.

On March 26, Joshua Childers was convicted of murdering his wife.

Deputy District Attorney Satnam Rattu, a member of the DA’s homicide unit, walked jurors through the story of how, two years prior, a man called 911 in neighboring Placer County to say he’d just shot his wife inside a mobile home in South Sacramento. Responding officers found Childers’ wife dead in her bedroom. Police used geotracking to identify Childers’ phone as the source of the 911 call and track his location, resulting in his arrest.

A judge sentenced Childers to 50-years-to-life in prison.