A state appellate court panel recently upheld the convictions of two gang members for a Compton youth preacher’s shooting death in Venice.
The three-justice panel from California’s 2nd District Court of Appeal rejected the defense’s contention that there was insufficient credible evidence to support Hopeton Parsley’s conviction for the June 4, 2012, killing of Oscar Duncan.
In a 26-page ruling, the appellate court justices found that “overwhelming evidence supported Parsley’s conviction.”
The appeals court panel also rejected co-defendant Kevin Dwayne Green’s contention that his first-degree murder conviction must be reversed or reduced to second-degree murder.
The two were convicted in February 2015 of Duncan’s killing.
Duncan was returning from dinner with his fiancee when someone in a car cat-called the woman, Deputy District Attorney Eugene Hanrahan said after the verdict in February 2015.
The 23-year-old youth minister was shot once in the face after approaching the car, from which someone shouted the name of a gang, according to the prosecutor.
Duncan was not a gang member and had been actively involved in gang- intervention efforts, authorities said.
Parsley was sentenced last year to 90 years to life in state prison, but the appellate court panel lopped 10 years off of that term.
Green is serving a 58-year-to-life sentence that remained unchanged by the ruling.