General Crime

* Redwood City Man Vanher Cho Who Helped Murder Suspect Josue Orozco Escape From Custody Committed To State Hospital

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A 19-year-old man who helped a murder suspect escape from custody last year was committed to a state hospital today after being found in San Mateo County Superior Court not competent to stand trial on charges of assault, an assistant district attorney said.Vanher Cho was ordered to spend a maximum of three years in Napa State Prison for violating his probation by allegedly assaulting his mother and aunt, according to the San Mateo County District Attorney’s Office.Two court-appointed doctors examined him and determined he “was not competent to understand the court proceedings,” Assistant District Attorney Morley Pitt said.Cho had been placed on probation after serving jail time for aiding the escape of 18-year-old Josue Orozco, the youngest person ever in San Mateo County to be charged as an adult with murder.Orozco was 14 when he allegedly fatally shot 21-year-old Francisco Rodriguez once in the back of the head in a gang attack in Redwood City on July 12, 2005, according to Chief Deputy District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe.Orozco and Cho were in custody in the San Mateo County Youth Services Center and were playing basketball when Cho helped Orozco escape the facility by scaling a wall Feb. 14, 2008, Wagstaffe said.Orozco was arrested Sept. 17, 2008, in San Antonio, Texas, and extradited back to San Mateo County in October 2008.That same month, Cho was released from custody after serving four months of his one-year jail sentence for helping Orozco escape, according to Wagstaffe. Cho was arrested again on May 15 in San Francisco for allegedly assaulting his mother and aunt, Wagstaffe said.He was then charged with violating his probation and transferred to the San Mateo County jail May 22, where he will remain until he is transferred to Napa State Hospital, Pitt said.

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