Six Deputy District Attorneys were honored by the San Diego County Board of Supervisors with proclamations for their outstanding contributions to public safety over the last year.
District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis was on hand to salute the prosecutors during a recent board meeting.
“I’m very proud of the outstanding work of these Deputy District Attorneys,” DA Dumanis said. “They truly represent the dedication and quality of our entire prosecutorial team throughout the office. Their exemplary work further demonstrates our commitment to the pursuit of justice across the County.”
Those honored include:
DDA Amy Maund
DDA Maund prosecuted two difficult murder cases over a six-month period. In People v. Grattan, Maund used DNA and blood spatter evidence and a grainy surveillance video recorded at a nearby business to convict the defendant of murder, despite no eye witnesses, no confession and no motive for the crime. In People v. Salgado, Maund faced significant challenges while successfully prosecuting the murderer of a well-known San Diego architect, including late disclosure of anticipated defense expert testimony and the defendant’s claim of unconsciousness due to intoxication at the time of the murder. Both defendants are now serving life sentences.
DDA Brendan McHugh
As the director of the Computer and Technology Crime High-Tech Response Team (CATCH), DDA McHugh has assembled computer forensic tools and a team of seasoned investigators who are able to complete sophisticated cases and present them in an understandable fashion in court. In People v. Burleson, Williams and Zimmerman, where the defendants committed a series of school burglaries over a three-month period, McHugh prosecuted the case by utilizing cutting-edge technology to identify the defendants and bring them to justice. McHugh is currently prosecuting the case of People v. Rowe, where after the victim outbid the defendant on a house, which the defendant considered her “dream home,” the defendant began electronically harassing the victim.
DDA Christopher Moon
DDA Moon brought to justice three violent and dangerous criminals in three cases. During the month-long trial of People v. Nguyen, Moon and co-prosecutor James Koerber handled last-minute reports from the defense attorney intended to disrupt the rhythm of the trial in which the defendant was charged with stabbing two victims to death during a large melee between two rival groups; the defendant was convicted and sentenced to 30 years in state prison. In People v. Ayon, the defendant was convicted of attempted premeditated murder and sentenced to 52 years-to-life in state prison for shooting at four different vehicles on San Diego area freeways, hitting one of the occupants. In People v. Tran, the defendant chose to testify on his own behalf as was subjected to a masterful cross examination by Moon, resulting in the conviction of two attempted murders, robbery and assault with a deadly weapon.
DDA Jodi Breton
In the case of People v. McCreary and Withers, both defendants were charged with murdering a 20-year-old woman. DDA Breton expertly dealt with challenging evidence to bring justice to these dangerous criminals. In this case, the victim was a heavy methamphetamine user who would leave her infant child with complete strangers. There was no clear motive for the murder and the defendants blamed each other for pulling the trigger. After a two-month trial, a jury convicted both defendants.
DDA Nicole Rooney
In just under an hour, the jury in the trial of People vs. Badasso returned with a guilty verdict after DDA Rooney convinced them that the defendant was guilty of first-degree murder of her 7-month old baby. Rooney kept the jury focused on the issue of the baby’s death and not the plight of the defendant.
DDA Ryan Saunders
During the past year, DDA Saunders tried several challenging and significant cases, including a first-degree murder and an elder abuse case. In People v. Salazar, Saunders convicted the defendant of first-degree murder of the mother of their two children, which occurred after he learned the victim had been dating another man. In People v. Foley, Saunders convicted the defendant on two counts of willful cruelty to a dependent adult causing great bodily injury for beating his 81-year-old mother, who had dementia.