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In 1973, Gerald Youngberg got a flat tire in a stolen car he was driving. He shot and killed California Highway Patrol Officer Larry Wetterling when Officer Wetterling stopped to help him with his flat tire not knowing the dangerous situation he was in with Youngberg. After shooting Officer Wetterling with a .38 caliber revolver, Youngberg stole officer Wetterling’s service weapon and shot him several more times. The suspect then stole Officer Wetterling’s patrol car and fled the scene.
Youngberg then crashed the patrol car near a gas station. Youngberg then shot and killed gas station attendant Robert Jenkins in an execution-style murder.
During the police search, Youngberg then shot and killed Lieutenant Al Stewart of the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department and wounded a civilian ride along.
A Good Samaritan passerby, who had a concealed handgun permit, witnessed the shootout between the Youngberg and Lieutenant Stewart shot and wounded the suspect. Youngberg was then taken into custody.
Youngberg was sentenced to death, but his sentence (along with hundreds of others’) was overturned in the mid-1970s when the California Supreme Court declared the state’s version of the death penalty unconstitutional.
Since then, Youngberg has applied for parole on 11 occasions and been denied each time. His last denial came in 2010 when he was told he would have to wait five years to reapply.
Now enactment of California Senate Bill 1399 has made it possible for Youngberg to have another hearing on Feb. 8, 2012. Youngberg will be applying for a “medical parole”. The new law is aimed at saving California millions of dollars in prison health care expenses by allowing the parole of medically incapacitated inmates. It is outrageous that this law is being used by cop killers like Gerald Youngberg to seek parole.
His case will be heard by the Board of Parole Hearings at High Desert State Prison in Susanville.
According to an expert it appears it will be difficult to deny him parole because of the new law.
Youngberg had a stroke eight years ago but he is not totally disabled. The only restrictions on his prison activities are that he is confined to a wheel chair and must have a lower bunk in a cell.”
Law enforcement agencies and organizations throughout California strenuously oppose parole of any kind for Youngberg. Fugitive Watch is joining the effort and encourages all good citizens to do the same.
Letters opposing Youngberg’s parole should reference “Penal Code 3550 Parole Hearing for Gerald Youngberg, Inmate Number B50097” and be sent to:
High Desert State Prison?Attn: C&PR/Records Office –Board Desk?475-750 Rice Canyon Road?P.O. Box 750?Susanville, CA 96127
Board of Parole Hearings?Attn: Lifer Scheduling Analysts?PO Box 4036?Sacramento, CA 95812-4036
We also wish to take this opportunity to call on SB1399 author Sen. Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, to consider amending his legislation to preclude the use of “medical parole” for anyone convicted of murdering a law enforcement officer.
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