A state appellate court panel Tuesday rejected the latest appeal filed on behalf of a Whittier man convicted of the August 2006 beating death of his 64-year-old father, who used a portable oxygen tank and a walker.
The three-justice panel from California’s 2nd District Court of Appeal agreed with a lower court’s decision that William Boyd Miller III’s recent petition for re-sentencing had no merit.
Miller was sentenced to 15 years to life in state prison in May 2008 after being convicted of second-degree murder and elder or dependent adult abuse resulting in death.
In a 2009 ruling, a state appellate court panel rejected Miller’s claim that there was insufficient evidence to support his second-degree murder conviction and that the trial court erred by not reducing the charge to manslaughter.
Miller also contended that the trial court did not consider that the mitigating factors that he had consumed alcohol the day of the killing and that his father, William Miller, with whom he lived, had emotionally and physically abused him, according to the 2009 ruling.
“Miller beat his father — a frail, elderly man attached to an oxygen tank — to death and did not assist him as he lay dying. Miller has not established that the court abused his discretion,” Presiding Justice Arthur Gilbert wrote on behalf of the panel in its 2009 opinion.
The younger Miller initially refused a friend’s request for him to call 911, then told a 911 dispatcher that he had gotten into a fight and hit his father with his fists, according to the 2009 ruling.
The medical examiner who performed the autopsy concluded that the elder Miller died from blunt-force trauma to the head and chest, and that the injuries were not consistent with an accidental fall, Gilbert noted in the 2009 ruling.
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