A judge has ordered prosecutors to provide the defense with information about the race of defendants and victims in murder cases.
Superior Court Judge Tim P. Kam said the defense must prove Lorenzo Mateo Cortez, was charged with a more serious offense than persons of other ethnicity. Cortez, 26, “was born to a Black mother and a Latino father,” the defense noted.
The defense seeks Solano County data in an attempt to prove that the Cortez case violates a 2020 law which says the sentencing on the basis of race, ethnicity or national origin is unlawful.
“Getting ‘raw data’ to actually file a formal motion in court is necessary,” said Thomas Kensok, defense attorney, according to the Vacaville Reporter on Feb. 17.
“Kim issued three orders: The DA’s Office must provide defendants’ race information in murder cases filed between Jan. 1, 2011 and Feb. 16, 2022; arrest and detention forms about the facts of the cases; and information on the race of the victims during the 10 years period,” the newspaper reported.
Kensok and attorney Jon C. Weir has hope to prove their client suffered a charge or conviction of a more serious offense than defendants in similar cases who were of other ethnicities.