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California in Brief | SAN DIEGO

Five to stand trial in fatal beating

May 23, 2008|Tony Perry

A judge Thursday ordered five men from La Jolla to stand trial in the beating death of a fellow surfer but rejected prosecutors' assertion that the five were part of a gang. If the five are convicted, the gang-designation could lead to longer prison sentences.

But Superior Court Judge John Einhorn, at the conclusion of a preliminary hearing, said he disagreed with the contention that the five, who called themselves the Bird Rock Bandits, were part of a gang whose main purpose was criminality.

Einhorn ordered Seth Cravens, 22; Eric House, 21; Orlando Osuna, 23; Matthew Yanke, 21, and Henry Hendricks, 22, to stand trial for the May 2007 death of Emery Kauanui Jr., 24.

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-- Tony Perry

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