Lauren Serene Key
February 5, 2014
There was a hearing in the Cameron Brown case that I was unable to attend. At the last moment, I heard that Bryan Barnes, one of the alleged shooters in the USC Chinese graduate students murders would be pleading guilty to two counts of first degree murder in exchange for the death penalty being taken off the table. After Barnes' sentencing, I did my best through sources to find out what happened at Brown's hearing.
Between the last hearing on November 15th, 2013 and today, Brown refused to speak to the court ordered psychiatrist, so no report was generated.
Judge Lomeli then ruled Brown competent to stand trial and the criminal proceedings reinstated. It's my understanding Judge Lomeli made that ruling based on the fact that defendants are presumed competent to stand trial.
I believe Brown was asked if he was still interested in representing himself. Brown said something to the effect that he hadn't thought about it. He was waiting for the outcome of today's hearing. It's my understanding that Judge Lomeli told Brown to let him know if he decides to go the route of pro per status.
Judge Lomeli also ordered Brown's former defense attorney Pat Harris to court to ensure that all discovery had been turned over to Brown's new counsel.
If there are no other bumps in the road, this case may get to trial by early summer, or most likely by late fall.