A Ventura teen was ordered Monday to serve at least 15 years in state prison for his role in the beachside slaying of a homeless man a year and a half ago.
Timothy Becker, 19, was one of four teens convicted of murder last year for kicking, beating and throwing stones at 58-year-old Army veteran James Clark on June 30, 2001, as Clark lay in a sleeping bag near a popular surf spot in Ventura.
According to court testimony, the teens were headed to a beach party at Surfers Point when they came upon Clark. They kicked and stoned him, beat him over the head with a marijuana smoking device and stole a jar of pennies from his backpack.
At least one of the teens, Robert Coffman, now 20, later returned and continued kicking Clark, who died of multiple injuries, including a crushed kidney, a broken rib and a possible skull fracture, according to the Ventura County medical examiner.