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Murders of Claudia Maupin and Oliver Northup
On the night of April 13, 2013, after years of homicidal urges, Marsh “had enough” and decided to make his fantasies come true. In the early morning hours of April 14, he left his mother’s home and wandered the streets of Davis in search of a home with open windows or doors, before coming upon Maupin and Northup’s residence. Marsh cut open the window screen, invaded the home, and made his way to the couple’s bedroom where he found Maupin and Northup asleep. Marsh then stabbed both victims to death. The attack was severe, leaving Northup with 61 stab wounds and Maupin with 67 stab wounds. After murdering Northup and Maupin, Marsh dissected, eviscerated, and mutilated their bodies. The couple’s bodies were discovered the next day. It wouldn't be until June that Marsh was arrested--due to Marsh's extensive planning of the murders, he left no DNA, fingerprints, footprints, or any other evidence at the crime scene. He became a suspect after bragging to his friends about the murders. Marsh was then interrogated and confessed to the crimes. He told investigators that the murders gave him a feeling of “pure happiness” which lingered for weeks. Marsh was convicted of the murders in September 2014. He was also declared sane.
In 2013, the California State Legislature had passed Senate Bill 260, which allows juvenile offenders such as Marsh to seek parole after 20 or 25 years. Because of this law, Marsh is eligible for parole after serving 25 years of his life sentence. In 2016, California voters passed Proposition 57, which requires that juvenile court judges decide whether juvenile offenders are tried in juvenile court or in adult court. In 2018, Marsh’s conviction was conditionally reversed pursuant to Proposition 57. A transfer hearing was held to determine if he should serve his sentence in the juvenile justice system or the adult criminal justice system. Though the juvenile court judge ruled to keep Marsh in the adult criminal justice system, a new law may result in Marsh being sent to the juvenile system. Senate Bill 1391 was signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown in 2018. It prevents juveniles under age 16 from being prosecuted in adult court. Opponents of SB 1391 argued that it conflicted with Proposition 57. In O.G. v. The Superior Court of Ventura County, the California Supreme Court determined that SB 1391 did not conflict with Proposition 57. Marsh contends that SB 1391 should apply retroactively to him, while prosecutors disagree. Oral arguments before the Third District Court of Appeal were held on August 18, 2021. If sent to the juvenile justice system, Marsh would have been released from incarceration upon turning 25. In September, the Third District Court dismissed the appeal.
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