“Non-Violent” Parolee Suspected of Killing 17 Year Old Lily Burk

Posted on July 28, 2009. Filed under: California State Budget, Crime, Parole |

Lily Burk, 17, murdered this past weekend.  Her suspected killer is a parolee that was considered "non-violent/non-serious" by the Calfornia Department of Adult Parole Opperations.

Lily Burk, 17, murdered this past weekend. Her suspected killer is a parolee that was considered "non-violent/non-serious" by the Calfornia Department of Adult Parole Opperations.

Below is a blog post from Ron Kaye L.A. blog.  What is discussed below is exactly what the Crime Victims Action Alliance and every law enforcement agency association in the state have been telling the Governor and the Secretary of Corrections and Rehabilitation will happen if parolees go unsupervised.  This is the second slaying of a 17 year old by a parolee in two days.  The first murder occurred in Woodland on Sunday.  A 17 year old boy was found “lying in the parking lot of the Crossroads Village Village Apartments on Matmor Road, bleeding heavily from a gunshot wound to his head.”

A comment posted to the blog, which we understand to be accurate, states that Charlie Samuel was out on parole for Petty Theft with Prior.  Not only is this an offense that will be considered for no parole but it is one of the crimes that may be reduced from a “wobbler” to a straight misdemeanor – which means that he would have not even gone to prison and certainly would not be on parole (possibly probation) for his crime.
He was released in February 2009 with two subsequent arrests in April 2009 and June 2009.  He was then ordered to a drug treatment residential program. Samuel was classified as a low level, non-violent/non-serious offender.

It is important to also note that a couple months ago, the Department of Adult Parole Operations sent out a directive to all parole administrators to reduce parole supervision on all parolees who had a commitment offense that did not fall under PC 667.5 (violent crime).

However, Region 3 (Los Angeles County) directed their Parole Administrators to lower the parole supervision level of parolees with a Violent Commitment Offense.

According to a comment posted to this blog story, “Los Angeles Police Officer Ricardo LIzzaraga was shot and killed by a non-violent, low level parolee.  The murder of Los Angeles County Sheriff Deputy Abel Escalante is a hard core gang member yet he was classified as a non-violent, low level criminal offender.”

This is just the begriming – the parole/prison reform plan to balance the budget hasn’t been fully implemented. Though it does appear that efforts are underway to begin implementation even prior to the legislation that would mandate the reform being approved.

**Below the following blog post is the full story from the LA Daily News regarding the murder of this young girl.


Lily Burk Murder Suspect: Classic Case of a “Non-Violent Offender” Being Freed from Prison

By Ron Kaye on July 27, 2009 10:30 AM
Charlie Samuel is the poster child for the kind of thugs classified as “non-violent offenders” despite a history of violent behavior — the kind of hopeless criminal who would be included in the governor’s planned release of 27,000 convicts to reduce prison costs.

Samuel has been arrested on suspicion of murdering 17-year-old Lily Burk, the Los Feliz teenager whose body was found Saturday morning in her Volvo at 5th and Alameda.

Police arrested Samuel nearby 12 hours earlier on drug charges, according the Times’ LA Now.

The LA Sheriff’s Department Inmate Information website shows Samuel was arrest April 23 on a parole violation, booked at Van Nuys Jail and assigned to a drug treatment program. He was formally released June 24(SAMUEL1.htm).

LA Now quoted law enforcement officials as describing Samuel as a transient with a history of violent crimes and drug problems.

Los Angeles Assistant Police Chief Earl Paysinger said metro officers detained Samuel, suspecting he had been involved in other criminal activity. The officers canvassed the area, looking for evidence of a possible crime but didn’t discover anything out of the ordinary.

This case raises all the right questions about what we’re doing freeing criminals who all too often plead out to lesser charges to avoid conviction for violent crimes — plea bargains that are all too common.

Here’s a guy who is living on the streets, doing hard drugs who got paroled and was left unsupervised by probation officers and released without anyone thinking of the possible consequences.

And now Lily Burk is dead because he apparently accosted her while she was running an errand and tried to rob her.

Lily Burk murder ‘really hits home’ LAPD says
Parolee, 50, is suspected of killing Oakwood student, 17
By Rick Orlov, Staff Writer
LA Daily News
Updated:07/27/2009 08:02:44 PM PDT


A career criminal already in custody for drinking in public and carrying a cocaine pipe was charged Monday with beating a 17-year-old girl to death after police matched his fingerprints with those found in the car where her body was found.

Police say parolee Charlie Samuel, 50, abducted Lily Burk Friday afternoon in the Mid-Wilshire area and forced her to try to withdraw money from various ATMs before killing her in a downtown parking lot.

Samuel had abandoned the car, with Burk’s body in the passenger seat, about a half-hour before his arrest by mounted officers patrolling Skid Row, where he was drinking beer, police said at a news conference Monday.

The brutal slaying of Burk, a Los Feliz resident who was to start her senior year at Oakwood School in North Hollywood this fall, has shocked a city all too familiar with violent crime.

At a news conference outside the LAPD’s Parker Center headquarters, LAPD Assistant Chief Jim McDonnell said the crime “really hits home for all of us.”

“I have a 17-year-old daughter myself and I can’t even imagine what the family has gone through over the weekend.

“And this is something that for all police officers and everybody in the city, I think, it really hits you right in the gut,” McDonnell said. “A tragic event for the whole city family today.”

There were signs of a struggle in the black Volvo where Burk’s body was found. Detectives said the girl had suffered head trauma.

After Samuel was booked on suspicion of murder, police said, he provided details that enabled authorities to piece together a basic chronology of events.

Burk left her family’s Los Feliz home about 2 p.m. Friday to pick up some papers for her mother, Deborah Drooz, a law professor at Southwestern University School of Law in the Westlake area.

Samuel, who is 5-foot-9 and 195 pounds, abducted Burk about an hour later as she was about to get into her parked car near Wilshire Boulevard and Wilshire Place. Police said that no weapons were involved.

Between 3:35 p.m. and 4 p.m., Burk called each of her parents to ask how she could use her credit card to get cash from an ATM. Her father, Gregory Burk, told her that the credit card could not be used at an ATM, police said.

“There was no sense by the parents that she was in trouble,” McDonnell said.

According to police, Burk made arrangements with her father to go to their home to pick up money, but she never made it there.

Shortly before 5 p.m. Friday, Samuel left the Volvo, with Burk’s body inside, in a parking lot at 458 S. Alameda St. However, Burk’s body was not found until 6:30 a.m. Saturday.

By that time, Burk’s parents had reported her missing, and police had started looking for her and her car.

After her body was found, fingerprints collected from the Volvo linked Samuels to her killing. Already in custody, he was booked on suspicion of murder.

Police have been working with the District Attorney’s Office and hope to see charges filed as early as today.

Samuel was in Los Angeles to complete a court-ordered program as a condition of his parole from an earlier conviction for theft, police said.

“He has a colorful criminal history,” LAPD Lt. Al Pasos said.

Nick Goldberg, a spokesman for Burk’s parents, said the family remains in shock over the slaying and have asked for privacy. There were no immediate plans for a vigil or service.

“We are grateful that the police apprehended someone so quickly and that this man is off the streets,” Burk’s parents said in a statement that was read to KTLA by a family friend. “We don’t want him to hurt anyone else. We will now let the legal process run its course.”

And in a statement released over the weekend, Burk’s parents described their daughter for those who never knew her.

“The thing we want people to know about Lily is that she was a beautiful person and that she was looking forward to her life. She was funny, warm, kind and empathetic. She was deeply and widely loved.”

She had been attending Oakwood, a private school wedged between the Hollywood Freeway and Magnolia Boulevard North Hollywood.

The school’s mission statement says it strives to teach each student “independence of thought, intellectual integrity, and moral depth” and prepare them to participate in a democratic society.

On Monday, administrators on campus said neither students nor teachers were available for comment.

The Los Angeles Police Protective League issued a statement on its Web site saying the case was “an unfortunate and horribly tragic example of why the LAPPL has vehemently opposed the early release of prisoners and minimizing the seriousness of parole violations as a means of reducing the state budget deficit. We are more passionate than ever about this issue because of the tragedy of Lily Burk.”

The police union said Samuel had been arrested on April 23 on a parole violation. Earlier, in February, he was released from state prison where he was serving time after an arrest for petty theft with a prior conviction.

“This is precisely the type of `low level’ parolee the state no longer wants to take responsibility for,” the police union said.

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