Court overturns part of conviction in Arroyo Grande cross burning case

October 17, 2014
Jeremiah Hernandez

Jeremiah Hernandez

A California appellate court has overturned two of the four convictions of a San Simeon man currently serving an 11-year prison sentence for his involvement in the 2011 cross-burning incident in Arroyo Grande. [Tribune]

In June 2012, a San Luis Obispo jury convicted Jeremiah Leo Hernandez, currently 36, of arson, terrorism in the form of a cross burning, terrorism in the form of arson targeting a person’s race and conspiracy to commit a crime. Hernandez also received a hate crime enhancement.

But, a second district appellate court ruled in August that the convictions of arson and terrorism in the form of arson are not valid when coupled with the cross burning count. The appellate court has ordered that a San Luis Obispo judge reverse and discount the two invalid convictions and re-sentence Hernandez.

Hernandez will return to San Luis Obispo Superior Court next month and could be out of prison in as soon as a year.

Following the arrests of four men in the cross burning, Hernandez was the only one to go to trial. The other three agreed to plea deals.

One of the men convicted received a 12-year prison sentence, while the other two were each sentenced to five years.



  1. SLO_Johnny says:

    One look at the guy and I’m certain that he will be back in prison in less than a year after he is released

    (2) 8 Total Votes - 5 up - 3 down
  2. Citizen says:

    I never believed that these meth idiots knew a Black person lived nearby. They were burning the cross for Kahn’s father who was killed by Sheriff’s deputies at that house after a homicide on the Mesa. They tried to put the cross in the front yard, but there were too many trees, so they went around to the side of the house by the apartment.

    However, having Jason Kahn off the streets is probably a public service. The others were just there helping Jason with his “monument”.

    (7) 11 Total Votes - 9 up - 2 down
  3. abigchocoholic says:

    Good ruling by the appellate court. These clowns were meth users and their crime was basically hallucinating stupidity on drugs. A guy named Hernandez doing a cross burning. It’s an oxymoron that almost makes you laugh out loud it’s so absurd.

    Last thing our state needs is to pay for this moron to be housed in prison for 11 years for cross burning while hallucinating.

    (3) 13 Total Votes - 8 up - 5 down
  4. Stunned says:

    I personally feel he should have received a long long sentence for any one of those convictions however, agree with the judges opinion. You shouldn’t be tried and convicted of two crimes when they are one and the same. Similar to being convicted of attempted homicide and manslaughter. (Bad example I’m sure.)

    (2) 6 Total Votes - 4 up - 2 down
  5. dogeatdog says:

    who smiles like that for a mug shot?

    (5) 13 Total Votes - 9 up - 4 down
  6. StakeHolder says:

    What a waste of court time. No trust in the judicial system these days….very sad.

    (8) 16 Total Votes - 12 up - 4 down

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