The District Attorney’s office “inadvertently erred” in placing Ka Pasasouk, the lead suspect for the quadruple homicide in Northridge, in a drug program three months ago rather than going to prison.
Los Angeles County District Attorney Public Information Officer Sandi Gibbons said the office has done an internal review on the case and concluded that the office had wrongly indicated Pasasouk was eligible to be in a Proposition 36 drug program. The drug program is the result of the Substance Abuse and Crime Prevention Act of 2000, which changed state law to allow non-violent drug possession offenders to be offered probation rather than jail time. As part of the probation, defendants have to take part in a drug program.
Pasasouk had been offered the program as a result of being charged with illegal possession of methamphetamines.
Gibbons also said training issues found during the review will be addressed by the DA’s office countywide.
Also, Immigrations and Custom Enforcement officials said Pasasouk was to be deported to his native country of Laos in 2006, but was unable to get the proper paperwork.
In a statement provided to the Sundial, ICE officials said they could not get the necessary forms from Laos to allow for his removal within the allotted time period afforded by the 2001 Supreme Court decision of Zadvydas v. Davis. That court case mandated that immigrants facing deportation had to be removed within 180 days.
The shooting occurred on Dec. 2, killing four people and the suspects were arrested in Las Vegas the next day. The suspects waived their extradition rights on Dec. 6, setting up for a return from Las Vegas to stand trial in Los Angeles. The homicide has led to efforts by Los Angeles city councilman Mitchell Englander to regulate illegal boarding houses.