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Jury Convicts Sacramento Teen-Ager for Several Racially Motivated Firebombings

August 31, 1994| Associated Press

SACRAMENTO — An 18-year-old Sacramento man described by his attorney as a racist has been convicted on five of 12 felony charges involving a series of racially motivated firebombings last year.

Richard Campos showed no emotion when the jury returned its verdict Monday after four days of deliberations.

The conviction on five counts carries a maximum of 14 years in prison, authorities said. Superior Court Judge James Ford declared a mistrial on the remaining seven counts and dismissed the jury.

Prosecutors did not say whether they would seek a retrial on the remaining charges, which include one count of attempted murder against Sacramento City Councilman Jimmie Yee. Campos was convicted of firebombing the Asian American councilman's home.

The jury deadlocked on arson and related charges involving bombings of the Temple B'Nai Israel and the offices of the Sacramento National Assn. for the Advancement of Colored People and the Japanese American Citizens League.

Campos was found guilty on two counts involving the firebombing of a state Department of Fair Employment and Housing office and on two counts of possession of destructive devices. Sentencing is Sept. 27.

Prosecutors called 50 witnesses in the case, but Campos' attorney, Michael Brady, rested without calling any witnesses. He contended that prosecutors did not prove their case and that "even racists are entitled to justice."

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