Saturday, August 11, 2012

Eureka man who pleaded guilty to helping his son dispose of a murder victim's body was released from jail Friday and given probation.

Father receives probation for helping son cover up murder; Donald Steele released from custody, given suspended sentence - Thadeus Greenson/The Times-Standard

Fifty-two-year-old Donald Steele was given a suspended sentence and three years probation Friday for his role in helping his son, 23-year-old Jacob Steele, dig Jerry George's body up from a shallow grave in Fieldbrook to toss him into the waters at the mouth of the Eel River.

Donald Steele pleaded guilty to a charge of being an accessory to a crime after the fact just days after seeing a jury convict his son of second degree murder for George's killing. He faced up to one year in jail under the deal and was free on his own recognizance pending sentencing.

...While the other people who helped Jacob Steele cover up the murder all reached plea agreements with law enforcement last year -- under which they received probation in exchange for testifying against Jacob Steele -- Donald Steele reportedly refused to cooperate or take a deal.
Ultimately, after his son was convicted of murder, Donald Steele pleaded guilty as charged in his case to avoid trial.

Is there anyone who ISN'T getting plea deals these days?