SF Judge in SB 1437 Matter Will Decide if Defendant Was Major Participant in 27-Year-Old Case

By Lona Kwan

San Francisco – On November 22, 2019, an SB 1437 evidentiary hearing was heard in Department 25 regarding the resentencing of the defendant, Anthony Scrivani, who has been serving a 27-year sentence for a robbery gone bad in 1992. There was never a trial.  Mr. Scrivani plead guilty to felony murder and has been in prison ever since.

Mr. Scrivani and his co-defendant, Mr. Patterson, went to rob a man in a trailer and the plan was that Mr. Scrivani would rummage through the trailer while Mr. Patterson held the man. While Mr. Scrivani was inside the trailer searching for valuables, Mr. Patterson shot the man outside of the trailer.

Assistant District Attorney Allison Macbeth argued that, based off the preliminary hearing transcript and Mr. Scrivani’s 27-year-old statements to the police, Mr. Scrivani was a major participant who acted with reckless indifference. ADA Macbeth also argued that Mr. Scrivani, who was inside the trailer despite being five feet away from the incident, made no attempt to stop Mr. Patterson from beating and murdering the victim.

Defense attorney Peter Fitzpatrick argued that there was no evidence that Mr. Scrivani was looking out the windows of the trailer when the shooting took place.  Mr. Fitzpatrick stated that Mr. Scrivani was startled once he heard the gunshots and couldn’t have possibly witnessed the events that led up to the murder because he was looking for items inside the trailer. The defense also argued that the defendant’s major role in the robbery was to look for valuable items in the trailer and he had no idea that his co-defendant, Mr. Patterson would harm anyone, let alone kill the now-deceased victim.

The defense also stated that Mr. Scrivani chose not to testify at this hearing because 27 years have passed since the tragic incident and he could not possibly remember every little detail. Defense counsel made an objection that the whole record of conviction was unreliable because there was no trial, and because of the circumstances surrounding Mr. Scrivani’s guilty plea.

At the time of the plea the prosecutor stated on record that Mr. Scrivani was not the killer and did not have an intent to kill. The defense argued that Mr. Scrivani plead guilty based upon the prosecutors’ statements and that, up until SB 1437, Mr. Scrivani was good for the felony murder.

Lastly, the defense further argued that, based upon the record of evidence before the court, Mr. Scrivani did not act with reckless indifference and, under SB 1437, he should be entitled to relief.

The matter was submitted to the court and Judge Conroy will makes his ruling on January 10, 2020.

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About The Author

The Vanguard Court Watch operates in Yolo, Sacramento and Sacramento Counties with a mission to monitor and report on court cases. Anyone interested in interning at the Courthouse or volunteering to monitor cases should contact the Vanguard at info(at)davisvanguard(dot)org - please email info(at)davisvanguard(dot)org if you find inaccuracies in this report.

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