Wednesday, April 23, 2014

McCavitt found guilty


JOSHUA McCAVITT goes over notes with his attorney Arturo Reyes during the trial. Democrat photo by Pat Dollins

From page A1 | February 10, 2014 | 12 Comments

A guilty verdict was handed Friday to a man accused the 2012 vehicular murder of a Camino woman.

A deliberating jury returned two guilty verdicts Friday morning after three hours of deliberation over two days — vehicular murder and gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated — in the case of Joshua McCavitt.

McCavitt sobbed and put his head in his hands after the first verdict was read. After both were read, defense attorney Arturo Reyes asked that the jury be polled. The jury was unanimous in the verdicts.

“It was an accident,” McCavitt said from the defense table. “I’m sorry, whatever the outcome. I didn’t want anyone to die.”

He was then chained and handcuffed. As he began walking out, his brother, in the audience, called out, “I love you, Josh.” McCavitt replied, “I love you, bro.”

As he was being led through a side door out of the courtroom, he yelled, “She was on hydrocodone,” to members of victim Denise Caldwell’s family. This had not been in evidence in the trial.

Robert Guth, Caldwell’s brother, was happy with the outcome of the two-week trial. “I’m glad a fair and just verdict was returned by the jury,” he said.

Caldwell’s family as a whole echoed the statement, collectively saying that they appreciated the work of the District Attorney’s Office, prosecutor Deputy District Attorney Michael Pizzuti and the CHP in their help to achieve justice.

“I think it was a just result. And that last thing he said …” Pizzuti trailed off, regarding McCavitt’s lack of remorse.

Kimithy Hassel, Caldwell’s best friend for 19 years, said that her friend had warned her about the very curve she lost her life on. “‘Kimmy,’ she’d say, ‘that corner, don’t forget to slow down, it’s dangerous,’” Hassel recalled. “She told me to only got 20 mph.” She noted that Caldwell was like a mother to Gared, Hassel’s son.

“This is the exact type of behavior that will not be tolerated in our community,” District Attorney Vern Pierson stated in a press release regarding the verdict. ”Cases such as these which involve repeat DUI offenders and death or great bodily harm are assigned to our grant funded Vertical Prosecution Team. This team of specialized prosecutors and investigators has once again proven the effectiveness of this grant when prosecuting complex DUI cases.

“Though nothing can change the tragic events of that day or relieve the family’s loss,” Pierson added, “it is my hope the guilty verdict can give the family a sense of closure and begin the healing process.”

Funding for the program comes from a grant by the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Pizzuti noted the vehicular murder charge carries a life sentence with a possibility of parole after 15 years. This subsumes the second charge, he said.

A judgment and sentencing hearing was scheduled for March 21 at 1:30 p.m.


Discussion | 12 comments

  • YuleFebruary 10, 2014 - 9:41 am

    I think his comment leaving the court says it all regarding his remorse. His tears were for himself, not for his victim. An "accident" means unavoidable. He had plenty of opportunity to avoid it. He didn't want anybody to die, but he did want to drink and drive, drink and drive, drink and drive....

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  • Up yoursFebruary 10, 2014 - 10:16 am

    Just wondering vern, did you use this same vertical team to prosecute your beloved Gloria Mas ? For being hauled out at her desk from 4 too many at lunch ! Who many do you think she sent up river for such crimes ? Wasnt she your "star" deputy ? What ever became of this case ? I dont ever recall ready about it hear at MD ! hhhhhhhhmmmmmmmm ... Thats strange . I think i shall remember come voting season !

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  • Nose with a Rubber HoseFebruary 10, 2014 - 12:29 pm

    Up, I'm no DA fan but cannel 13....... "El Dorado County District Attorney Vern Pierson said any potential prosecution in the case would be handled by the California Attorney General’s office to avoid a conflict of interest.".........What I found odd about Gloria was she drove TO WORK drunk. How good at your job can you be with a .12 BEFORE work? And how do you get to a .12 first thing in AM?

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  • Oh BrotherFebruary 10, 2014 - 12:55 pm

    The whole drunk driving/under the influence thing is so sad. Both sides are suffering in most cases. We all need to be sure we don't drink and drive. And we all need to be aware that our regular prescriptions from our doctors can change how alcohol effects us individually. And not just the xanax or pain meds but things like heart medications etc. We all can be very judgmental but it can happen to any of us. After following some of these cases here locally and my own personal experience with a family member's addiction issues, I will not be so flip about getting behind the wheel after drinking. And I am not talking about drinking out at a bar, I am talking about just a dinner out with my hubby and friends. I am willing to be the sober driver from here on out. Sad outcome for all in this case that I don't want to experience.

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  • Nose with a Rubber HoseFebruary 10, 2014 - 1:20 pm

    Oh Bro, I guarantee this would never happen to me. How can I be so sure? I don't drink/drug and drive. Even when I was young in Hollywood, we would take a cab TO club, so when our judgment was later impaired we had no choice but to take a cab home.

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  • Oh BrotherFebruary 10, 2014 - 1:26 pm

    Well I am very happy to hear that Nose. My comment is not to compete or judge, just hope that others learn from these tragedies.

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  • Up yoursFebruary 10, 2014 - 2:07 pm

    Hears the deal , i do not condown dui ! What i do not like is the HYPOCRISY ! Take example , last week there was a story that made its way to all local news media's , michelle choulde , im no friend or foe of said person , this DA's office made this person to be a fugitive of justice ! All while being out on said bail , all of a sudden she is a fugitive ! For gods sake , she was local working in a small town , im not supportimg either party's here ! Just a concerned citizen listening to the propoganda of this corrupt govn !

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  • Nose with a Rubber HoseFebruary 10, 2014 - 4:38 pm

    Up, I agree, the hypocrisy is endless and would take a life time to cite examples but my latest outrage was Ethan Couch, DUI, killing 4 and his “affluenza” defense. No jail/prison time. Never even apologizing to his victims families. Having said that, maybe somebody feels us because just today......Ch 13...... Ca. assemblyman Mike Gatto said “This is outrageous. If this type of thing creeps into our criminal justice system, we could have a lot of very unjust verdicts.”The Southern California democrat has authored Assembly Bill 1508, which would prevent defendants from raising the concept that being spoiled is a disadvantage.

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  • Up yoursFebruary 10, 2014 - 4:48 pm

    While i DO agree with LAW enforcement , i do not agree with government , , espesially in these times ! I would suggest a cleansing of the guard ! Hypocrits they are !

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  • You BetFebruary 10, 2014 - 5:18 pm

    Community members have reported that a large number of Police have descended on the Health & Wellness center in Georgetown California on Tuesday morning. Placerville Newswire | Feb 5 2014 Update: A statement from Marshall Medical Center regarding Divide Wellness. On Feb. 4, The Divide Wellness Center in Georgetown was served with a search warrant by the State Department of Justice. Marshall Medical Center is not the subject of the investigation; we are fully cooperating with the State in providing the documents they have requested. The investigation is filed in court under seal and we do not have access to, so are unable to disclose, any details. As this is a matter of urgency, we have closed the clinic this week and are hoping to reopen by Monday, Feb. 10. Please be assured that we are continuing to provide patients with excellent care at our other facilities and plan to re-open Divide Wellness Center next week. Lourdes Edralin, Marshall Medical | Feb 5 2014 PRpond, Georgetown CA -- Reports started coming in on Tuesdays, Feb. 4, 2014, that a platoon-sized contingent of law enforcement officers with jackets that read, "POLICE" surrounded the Divide Health & Wellness Center in Georgetown about 8:30am. Eyewitnesses claim to have seen one employee's car and home search simultaneous to the search at the business. No official word has come from Law Enforcement yet, but community members were on the Face book community page, "What's happening on the Divide?" Publisher's notation to Facebook comments: It was truly a dark Kafkaesque world where Staci police or KGB officers have the authority to sweep up entire clinics as the masses waited politely for some government agency to give them any information about a large police action that took place on their caregivers and neighbors. Nearly 24 hours had passed since a police force had moved in and raided the health clinic and closed the establishment's operation indefinitely. Yet no one stepped up to tell the public what had happened to their community health center and what should patients with pending appointments or medical needs be expecting and if they should be doing something in alternative. Even today, no agency has publicly owned up to the raid. Marshall Medical has since issued a statement to inform patients. A rule of traditional journalism is that it is the Press' duty to hold the feet of government to the fire when it is not being transparent with the public. I believe I have done that, but, only because of your help. Cris Alarcon

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  • Ruby RidgeFebruary 10, 2014 - 7:27 pm

    Bet, I read this in the other edc rag a few days ago and the secrecy, lack of info, reporting ect, is very Gestapo-ish. These are the types of constitutinal abuses I worry about, not friggin health care. Since Marshal is not named I'm guessing some sort of Medi-cal fraud?

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  • You BetFebruary 11, 2014 - 4:17 pm

    Mt Demo is protecting Marshall.. to many Narco scripts. by the FNP..

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