SOUTH PASADENA — A 20-year-old man received a 12-year prison sentence Wednesday for striking a teenage boy in the head with a baseball bat, leaving him with severe brain injuries, authorities said.
Elijah Stinson of La Puente received the sentence from Pasadena Superior Court Judge Candace Beason as part of a plea agreement, Sgt. Jim Valencia of the South Pasadena Police Department Detective Bureau said in a written statement.
He pleaded guilty to charges of attempted murder without premeditation as well as assault with a deadly weapon likely to cause great bodily injury, Valencia said.
Stinson, then 17 years old, walked up behind then-18-year-old South Pasadena High School student Jeffrey Cortinez on Feb. 1, 2008, and struck him in the head with a baseball bat, investigators said.
Despite his age, Stinson was tried as an adult.
Stinson was believed to have held a grudge against Cortinez for several weeks, ever since Cortinez had become part of a fight involving one of Stinson’s friends.
Stinson’s girlfriend at the time, then-20-year-old Jeniell Galvan-Franco of Glendora, was convicted of acting as a getaway driver after the attack.
She pleaded guilty to a count of assault with a deadly weapon in late 2009 and was sentenced to three years behind bars, officials said. Most of the time had already been served at the time of the sentencing, and Galvan-Franco has since been released on parole.
“The attack left Cortinez with severe brain injuries from which he is still trying to recuperate with the help of rehabilitation and around-the-clock nursing care,” Valencia said.
“During an emotional sentencing,” he added, “(Cortinez’s mother) and Jeffrey Cortinez’s younger brother spoke to the court and to Stinson directly about the physical, emotional and financial toll the unprovoked attack has taken on Jeffrey Cortinez and his family.”