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Former LB Policeman Convicted in Wife's Attacks

Jurors find ex-Long Beach Beach Police Dept. officer Brandon Preciado guilty of repeatedly choking and beating his wife at their Pico Rivera home over a four-month span before his arrest.

A 30-year-old former Long Beach police officer was convicted Tuesday of more than a dozen felonies for repeatedly choking, beating and threatening his wife at their Pico Rivera home through January, 2012.

Brandon Preciado was convicted of six felony counts of corporal injury to a spouse, three counts each of assault with a deadly weapon and assault by means likely to produce great bodily injury and one count of criminal threats.

The eight-woman, four-man jury, which deliberated for about a day, also convicted him of five misdemeanor charges -- three counts of assault and two counts of battery. He was acquitted of resisting, obstructing or delaying a law enforcement officer.

He was scheduled to be sentenced Oct. 29. The prosecutor in the case said Preciado could be sentenced to up to 20 years in prison for his convictions.

Prosecutors said Preciado's attacks on his wife occurred between Sept. 18, 2011 and Jan. 12 at the couple's Pico Rivera home. She fled to a neighbor, who reached L.A. County Sheriff's Dept. deputies.

``She has been broken down, abused, terrorized by someone she loves,'' Deputy District Attorney Amy Pentz told jurors during her closing argument, recounting alleged assaults with a police baton, metal flashlight, hammer, belt and a broom.

During an earlier preliminary hearing, Preciado's wife Yessenia, the mother of three, testified that during the first attack, Preciado threatened to hit her with a work-issued flashlight and to break her jaw if she didn't tell him the truth, and then wrapped a belt around her neck. She said she suffered bleeding from her nose during an attack Nov. 11 in which her husband put her in a headlock.

She also said he choked her during a New Year's Day run-in, but he told her he wouldn't kill her at the time because her brothers were in the home. The woman testified that her husband pushed her into a tile shower wall, struck her with a closed fist, threatened to hit her with a hammer and break her jaw and then struck her with a broom on Jan. 4.

Preciado hit her repeatedly Jan. 9 with his police-issued baton after ordering in an angry voice for her to get ``on all fours,'' and then woke her up a day later with his forearm against her neck, she testified.

The woman testified that she suffered a swollen left eye and bloody lips during the last alleged attack Jan. 12, saying her spouse repeatedly slapped her across the face, bent her left pinky back, bit her face and threatened that she should ``prepare to die'' before she ran to a neighbor's house to seek help.

Her preliminary hearing testimony was consistent with an earlier interview with police detectives, the prosecutor said, but during the trial, Yessenia repeatedly said she didn't remember what had happened.

``Under oath, she said it didn't happen,'' defense attorney Leo Newton argued. ``My question is, which version of her testimony can you rely on to reach a verdict in this case?'' Newton argued that Yessenia had worked as a 911 operator and ``hears these kinds of stories all the time.'' He stressed that there were no corroborating witnesses to any of the alleged attacks prior to Jan. 12, when she sought help from a neighbor and police were called to the house.

He suggested that her testimony during the preliminary hearing was based on fear that if she didn't cooperate with the prosecution she might lose custody of her children to child welfare authorities. But in rebuttal, Pentz said ``the evidence of the crimes is overwhelming'' because Yessenia's original version of events was corroborated by injuries she was unable to hide from friends and co-workers and by days she missed at work because of those injuries. ``She doesn't want to remember,'' Pentz said of Yessenia's trial testimony. ``That is how we expect a domestic violence victim to react.''

Preciado is no longer employed by the Long Beach Police Department, according to media relations spokeswoman Nancy Pratt.

-City News Service

John B. Greet October 04, 2012 at 12:49 AM
Nice attempt to duck, dodge, deflect, and misdirect, there, Ruehle. Where is your verifiable proof that former Chief Batts was involved in "multiple domestic violence incidents"? Either provide your proof or admit that you have none. Beeler's slanted hit-pieces against Batts do not constitute proof. Letters written to Beeler that contain no evidence of their own, likewise do not constitute proof. That Batts has not dignified Beeler's (and your) unfounded accusations with a response or a denial, does not constitute proof. One more time, Ruehle, where is your proof? If you have proof, provide it. If you don't have proof, at least step up and demonstrate the maturity and intellectual honesty to admit it. We already know that your premise concerning Preciado was utterly false. LBPD has arrested a number of former LBPD officers over the years for both alleged and proven criminal acts and you, yourself, have openly acknowledged this in the past. Prove your accusations against Batts are true or admit that you cannot.
Ki October 06, 2012 at 05:32 PM
Witnesses to incidents that where so life threatning they never said anything till now? I do not think he is a saint. Something obviously happened for this to be out but... The media does always release the worse. Victim that's this "terrified" wouldn't back track months later. Knowing that he is in custody and can't hurt her. He's held to a hire standard because of what his job was, therefore the book was thrown at him. I don't defend him but anyone else with those charges would have been out by now or getting a way better deal. It's unfortunate. Prayers for the victim and her kids and also for him. He needs help.
Sadden October 15, 2012 at 08:45 AM
I sure he's no saint, and no matter what caused this it's unexcusable, key question is it true??? And being in the army four years and what the government puts this kids thur!!! Drinking is way to exscape, and than not remembering the night before.. It seems like this kid needs help not jail. We as Americans fail to see the good in people like serving our country and knowing that more than half return with mental problems. Who should be accountable for this. For her sake I hope she telling the truth. Because she took a Father from her children that Ioved them so. There is just so more to this whole ordeal, is he really guilty of all or is she guilty of lying .why change you storie now. Did our system fail us again? What is the truth, cus truthfully she had nothing to fear seeing he was already in jail. I guess that's what the systems about putting people in jail thinking he might be guilty. God forbid they be wrong .and lose a case. Remember this there is only one judge any jury! And he sees everything!!!
R. J. Steelworth October 15, 2012 at 01:02 PM
I have to concur with Greet. While I have no personal knowledge of the Batts case that Ruehle seems to be so obsessed with (has anyone ever produced a crime report?) no one I know at LBPD is going to put their career on the line for someone who is abusing his spouse.
R. J. Steelworth October 15, 2012 at 01:12 PM
Also noteworthy, is that Ruehle casts dispersions on the integrity of LBPD yet uses the the words of a former LBPD member to make his point. Nice job of cherry picking the facts sport. Joe Rabe is an absolutely reputable guy and Batts is certainly no saint but I'm still waiting for the evidence against Batts on the alleged domestic violence cases. All we hear from Ruehle is innuendo. For a change some facts would be nice.

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