A Whittier man who withdrew an insanity defense over his own attorney's objections was sentenced Friday to 13 years in prison for throwing acid in the face of a 4-year-old La Habra girl at Los Coyotes Regional Park in January.
Mark Edward Hand, 26, who told court-appointed psychiatrists that Satan had told him to attack the girl, was given the maximum sentence by Superior Court Judge John J. Ryan.
Hand was convicted in July of attacking the girl, Rachel Ogawa, and her mother, Elaine Ogawa, as the two left a restroom at the regional park in Buena Park on Jan. 18. After Hand's lawyer, Deputy Public Defender Diana Polos, had told the jury that the sanity issue would be the thrust of Hand's defense, the defendant decided to withdraw his insanity plea.
Polos said later that Hand feared he would end up spending more time in a hospital than he would in prison.
Hand's victim is still recovering from serious facial burns and may need further surgery because of a damaged esophagus. Hand threw acetic acid at her at close range from two paper cups, and some of it went down the girl's throat.