Bencoma found guilty of felony assault

Inyo County DA Office press release

On September 6, 2017 an Inyo County Jury convicted Bishop-area resident Raymond Bencoma of four counts of felony assault with a firearm arising out of an incident that occurred in the early morning hours of August 26, 2016.

Ray Bencoma

Under California law, these charges are classified as serious felonies. Mr. Bencoma was charged under a specific section that alleged assault on peace officers with a firearm. “It appears that the jury, based on the evidence in the case, did not believe that Mr. Bencoma knew or reasonably should have known that the individuals he was assaulting were peace officers—but they found beyond a reasonable doubt that he was assaulting human beings, and knew it”.

The evidence presented showed that the officers approached Mr. Bencoma during the course of a domestic violence investigation. It was dark, and for officer and public safety reasons, they did not announce their presence as police officers, and used minimal lighting. This is well-accepted police practice for approaching a known dangerous individual suspected of a violent crime, but it may have created some doubt about the identity of the individuals assaulted.

On September 7, following the jury’s guilty verdicts, the case returned to court for a court or bench trial before the Honorable Brian Lamb on the issue of whether or not Mr. Bencoma had suffered three prior convictions of serious and/or violent felonies. The Judge found those allegations to be true, and the matter set for sentencing on October 19, 2017.

Final sentencing decisions are always made by the presiding judge, but Mr. Bencoma is facing a potential sentence of 25 years to life on each of the four assault with a firearm counts. Mr. Bencoma was previously convicted of being an ex-felon in possession of a firearm and an ex-felon in possession of ammunition.


14 Responses to Bencoma found guilty of felony assault

  1. mouthpiece September 13, 2017 at 7:21 pm #

    He was shot at 7x. They removed 4 bullets from his head. LE Created the whole fiasco! They were not flagged down, there was no DV report. They were tresspassing and did not announce they were law enforcement. Now tell me….If several individuals were lurking around your house at 3:30 in the morning and you were woke by a barking dog…..and could hear footsteps etc. , what would you do?

  2. Makoto Suzuki September 13, 2017 at 7:23 am #

    The person shot seven times by law enforcement in the dark on his own property is guilty of assault?

    • FedUp September 13, 2017 at 12:06 pm #

      Where are you getting your facts ? lol seven times . Smh .

      • Makoto Suzuki September 13, 2017 at 4:35 pm #

        A deputy fired seven rounds, striking Bencoma at least twice.

    • INYOFACE September 13, 2017 at 7:28 pm #

      Play Stupid Games ! Win Stupid Prizes.

  3. Low-Inyo September 9, 2017 at 6:19 pm #

    I was just thinking….judging from that photo here,and his past history,how’d you like to have a Daughter,be sitting at home watching the Dodgers game on T.V,knock on the door,and your Daughter there….with this guy….introducing him to you as her new boyfriend ….wouldn’t that be nice ?….wouldn’t you wanta shake his hand and welcome him into your home ?

  4. Rick O'Brien September 8, 2017 at 10:29 pm #

    Alright, Judge Lamb…this guy has been a blight on the community and the entire Owens Valley for way too long . I hope you see fit to put this animal where he belongs, where he can do no harm to anyone who is unfortunate enough to cross his path . Flat out, he’s dangerous, and the 3 strikes law was written for habitual criminals just like him.

    • Verne September 9, 2017 at 6:48 am #

      I was never a fan of the three strike law, too much leeway has led to abuse by the judicial system. But if ever there was a candidate for the three strike sentence, Raymond is it.

  5. Tinner September 8, 2017 at 2:46 pm #

    “25 years to life on each of the four assault with a firearm counts.”
    I’m guessing that means 100 years to life, good, he deserves it and he’s had it coming for a long time.
    It looks like his poor decisions finally caught up to him.
    The city of Bishop will be a little safer with this guy behind bars.

  6. Low-Inyo September 8, 2017 at 1:48 pm #

    ..Probably,sentenced with 25 to life coming up,but the way our court system works,and how this guy and his lawyers seem to be able to work it, appealing the verdict,as well as the sentence….out on some type of bond or bail untill that gets resolved…..lawsuits filed against Inyo County and Inyo County Law Enforcement…back out on the streets,highways and bi-ways,and we’ll all be seeing that mug(and his future mug-shots on citizen RIMS),in and out of jail,in and out of court untill about 2025….

    • Pedro September 10, 2017 at 2:10 pm #


      So you’re alright with appeals by prosecution, but not by defense? Maybe your hyperbolic nightmare fantasies will go away when the secret police tuck you in at bedtime.

      • Low-Inyo September 11, 2017 at 7:52 am #

        Pedro…It’s not called “appeals” by prosecution…it’s called re-trying the charges that a first jury couldn’t agree on…and as with this one here,the second jury got it right…

        • Pedro September 12, 2017 at 8:13 pm #

          You’re right, this was a retrial. Prosecution can appeal on certain grounds.

          My point is you complain when a defendant furthers the legal process, but support prosecution when it does.

  7. INYOFACE September 8, 2017 at 11:27 am #

    Call Him Drunken Ira Hays !
    He Won,t Answer anymore , Not the Whisky Drinking Indian or the Marine who went to WAR .


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