Bencoma trial scheduled to begin today

Ray Bencoma’s trial on multiple charges including assault on an officer begins today in Independence.

According to Inyo County District Attorney Tom Hardy, most of Monday will be taken up with jury selection. Opening arguments should begin Tuesday.

The Bishop resident has entered a plea of not guilty by reason of insanity to charges that also include felony possession of a firearm and ammunition, possession of stolen property and corporal injury to a significant other.

The charges stem from an incident in the early morning of August 26 last year when an Inyo County Sheriff’s deputy was flagged down by a female alleging she was the victim of domestic violence.

According to Hardy, Bencoma will first be tried on the specific charges. “If the jury finds…that the defendant is guilty of any of the charges, it (the jury) will then be presented with evidence regarding his sanity.” He goes on to state the plea “places the burden of proof on the defendant to show by a preponderance of the evidence that he was ‘incapable of knowing or understanding the nature and quality of his…act and of distinguishing right from wrong at the time of the commission of the offense.’””

The defendant has already been found competent to stand trial. The distinction, according to Hardy: competency to stand trial is based on “whether a defendant understands the nature of the charges…, the nature of the legal proceedings and whether he can cooperate with his attorney in preparing a defense.”

The Sheriff’s Department report stated Bencoma “appeared from behind an out-building and pointed a semi-automatic weapon at the” deputy. The deputy fired, hitting Bencoma. He was transported to Northern Inyo Hospital, then transferred to a hospital in Reno, Nevada.

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Maddawg
Maddawg
5 years ago

All we hear is what the media wants us to hear. The cops here in bishop and for that matter the whole laughable judicial system here can do or say whatever they want to because there is nobody checking on them to see if they are abiding by the laws… Read more »

ReesesP
ReesesP
5 years ago

He’s pleading insanity because he has no better defense . What a joke . Have fun in prison ray .

Trouble
Trouble
5 years ago

I just want to hear why they all turned off their recorders? Were they told to? It’s hard to figure out.

Kyle Crowle
Kyle Crowle
5 years ago

It’s all FAKE NEWS haha lol

mouthpiece
mouthpiece
5 years ago

The sheriff report does not say they were flagged down. It’s all a bunch of bull. Cameras were not just turned off right before the shooting, but for 29min. The shooting happened 3 minutes after CHP arrived in scene.*@#/^**()*^^/ $#@@@/

Low-Inyo
Low-Inyo
5 years ago

Trouble…I somewhat agree with you there….there might be some “thin blue line ” involved….but with this guys previous history and actions,like you say,hard to feel sorry for him….maybe kinda like the “O.J.” thing….if you get away with some things,the time will come when your history comes up and bites you… Read more »

Trouble
Trouble
5 years ago

I actually want all the details on this case.. I hope we are kepted informed here on this trial. It’s hard for me to feel sorry for this guy, but I really think the public has a right to hear why the local law enforcement say they turned off their… Read more »

Shaun bates
Shaun bates
5 years ago

Get the gallows ready….lol only Probation today! Boy have things changed in 100 years.

Low-Inyo
Low-Inyo
5 years ago

I’m not gonna be able to follow this trial….by reason of insanity….

Buzz Killington
Buzz Killington
5 years ago
Reply to  Low-Inyo

Low inyo-
Most of us who read your comments know that your insane!

Liberalism is a mental disorder ????

Low-Inyo
Low-Inyo
5 years ago

Buzz….and conservatism is what they call logical and rational actions and thinking….don’t believe that,see what going on in the White House,right now,this very moment…

Buzz Killington
Buzz Killington
5 years ago
Reply to  Low-Inyo

Never mentioned the word Conservatism.

The defense rests! ????