Man Who Ambushed Officer Could Get Away With His Murder Due To New CA Law

Downey Police Corporal Ralph Diaz is appalled that one of Officer Ricardo Galvez's killers could get a light sentence.

Downey, CA – A California man involved in the ambush-style murder of a Downey police officer in 2015 could be released from prison in just three more years due to a law change.

Downey Police Officer Ricardo Galvez, 29, was attacked as he was sitting in the station parking lot in his vehicle on Nov. 18, 2015, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page.

Just before he checked off shift, Officer Galvez was ambushed by three suspects, one of whom fired a gun into his vehicle, hitting him in the face.

Officer Galvez, a U.S. Marine Corps veteran with five years on the force, died of his wounds.

The suspects, Abel Diaz and his half-brothers, Jeremy Alvarez and Steven Knott, escaped from the scene and were arrested the following day.

Investigators later determined that the shooting occurred during a botched robbery attempt, the Press-Telegram reported.

Diaz, who was 16 at the time of the officer’s murder, later confessed that he and Knott covered their faces with cloth, then approached Officer Galvez’s vehicle from opposite sides while Alvarez remained inside the getaway car, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Office Sergeant Richard Biddle testified.

Both suspects were armed, but it was Knott who fired into the vehicle, investigators said.

Diaz claimed that Knott’s gun fired by accident.

Knott and Alvarez are still awaiting trial for their roles in Officer Galvez’s, murder, and prosecutors have not yet announced whether or not they will seek the death penalty, KCBS reported.

Diaz subsequently pleaded guilty to murder, attempted robbery, and robbery in December of 2018.

He was initially charged as an adult, but his case was transferred back to the juvenile court system after California voters approved the passing of the Public Safety and Rehabilitation Act of 2016.

Under the policy change, prosecutors no longer have the power to charge juveniles as adults at their own discretion, and the court is left to determine whether or not a transfer is warranted.

Then, in September of 2018, California Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill into law that took away prosecutors’ ability to charge accomplices with felony murder.

SB 1437 changed the law to say that a person can only be convicted of felony murder if they actually participated in killing someone, or if they were “a major participant in the underlying felony and acted with reckless indifference to human life,” the Sacramento Bee reported.

Prior to the law change, California had a “felony murder rule,” which allowed someone to be held criminally liable for a murder that occurred while they were committing a felony, even if it was their accomplice who killed somebody.

As a result, Diaz could walk out of prison in just three years, KCBS reported.

“Mr. Diaz was not some innocent kid, caught up in the moment, and an accident occurred,” Downey Police Department Captain Mark McDaniel told the City Council last week. “He actively participated, with even his face partially covered to hide his identity, in the murder of Ricky. How in the world can Mr. Diaz be released out into our community in the next few years? It’s really unbelievable.”

Downey Police Officer Association (DPOA) President Corporal Ralph Diaz said that there has also been discussion about filing a lawsuit against the state in an effort to overturn the law.

“As long as I’m alive, I will never let Ricky’s memory die and I will never let this Senate bill go down,” Cpl. Diaz vowed.

“The hope is to have it changed,” he explained. “And if we can’t have it completely overturned, at least meet somewhere in the middle.”

Comments (28)
No. 1-23
AnnykaV
AnnykaV

Due to, not do to. Normally don't comment corrections, but it's in the headline.

LouisCamblot
LouisCamblot

Perhaps someone should challenge the law in court?!

ProGODProUSA
ProGODProUSA

Surprise, surprise - it's ... California! This idiotic state is trying to catch up to New York - its model of liberalism. It seems to me that this state is taking more and more steps against LEOs and the legal citizens who are law-abiding.

HonorYourHeroes
HonorYourHeroes

It's unbelievable on what California would do just to push their liberal agenda.

JDBNYC
JDBNYC

California and New York are neck and neck in their competition to see who can be the most communist-like state. Disgusting.

JBo
JBo

If they ever start building a wall on the southern border...make sure it includes California.

JohnPollastro
JohnPollastro

Whackafornia build the wall-in the south and continue up north along the California border

LEO0301
LEO0301

All bad things seem to originate in California. I'm not sure how officers function under the idiotic laws of that state. Maybe it's time for citizens to dole out justice when the courts won't.

MSK
MSK

California!!! Christ, how much longer before they take guns away from the police? SMDH.

Nielkyleevankate
Nielkyleevankate

Throw away the key.

Budman
Budman

Just don't understand

NickyJ
NickyJ

California is going down fast. Glad I moved from there

negolien
negolien

Disgusting fkin calif dems are pos..

America1st
America1st

So sad that I hate the state I was born, grew up and raising my kids in. A few more years until the last one is out of school and I’m out!!!

K9ndn
K9ndn

Another reason not to live in California.

LEO0301
LEO0301

@K9ndn yup

LanetaJane16
LanetaJane16

Will someone please stop this governor and all liberals from turning our state into a place no one is safe. Do we not have anyone in government with backbone to stand up to the liberal/socialist agenda? What mindset do you think this kid will have knowing what he is getting away with just because of his age...scary.

Popcop.M1
Popcop.M1

Commi-fornia is a criminals paradise. I feel for the LEO community that works so hard in that crap hole to keep peace and serve justice. That state is going down, and is a good example of leftist dem ran state.

LynnSB
LynnSB

This has to be some type of SICK competition between California & New York as to who can F*ck up there State the worst, Allow as many Illegals as they can get to come in, Screw over the American Residents living there and Tax the Living Hell out of those who actually PAY THE TAXES !!!! These three POS should have never mad it to the court house !! ~ So Very Sorry for the Officer and his Family -- His Life Mattered and They Deserve Better then this BS !!

chiefd
chiefd

I'm not sure I get this. Diaz admitted to being present, as a principal actor, in an attempted robbery, where his half brother was also a principal and fired a fatal shot into officer Galvez. That is a death penalty case in many states. So now Diaz gets a slap on the fanny and released? Someone take this POS out, because he will do it again.

ACSO-Charles-One
ACSO-Charles-One

The general public and LEO’s in California shouldn’t be surprised at the outcome or possible outcome of this case. A majority of the Socialists, Democrats and illegal aliens asked for these changes by the power of an election. Elections have consequences (quote from a dipshit that once held elected office) and California is getting exactly what they asked for, or voted for. LanetaJane16, no you don’t have anyone in elected office who can help. They are to concerned with making sure nobody’s feelings are hurt, so they are busy in Sacramento changing he/she to them, they, those or any other dumb ass “gender neutral term” they, them those can think of. The last thing on the agenda is public safety.

BlueLM101
BlueLM101

Why couldn't Nostradamus have been right?!?!

Stanracer
Stanracer

Hug-a-thug, bleeding heart liberal politicians hard at work.☹👎