The San Francisco DA’s office recently celebrated a long carjacking sentence — for a prosecution that was more than four years in the making.
San Francisco Judge Jerome Benson sentenced David Perryman, 47, to 29 years and eight months in state prison on Friday — close to the maximum of 31 years and 8 months — following six felony convictions the DA secured last April for three separate and terrifying carjackings.
Part of the reason the case took so long, according to the prosecution, is that Perryman cycled through three different lawyers plus himself (he went pro per twice).
“He seemed not to get along with his attorneys,” said prosecutor Jerry Coleman. “That would be the most charitable way of putting it.”
Even the post-trial sentencing phase alone took six months, Coleman said, after Perryman mounted three challenges against the trial judge, sued him in federal court, and took a writ to the appellate court. All led nowhere.
After the jump, jurors hit replay on some video footage ...
In the bizarre April 2005 carjackings, Perryman, a homeless man, targeted parked vehicles with young women sitting in them, hurling a concrete utility cover to shatter the passenger window and dive into the cars, then punch the women and shout misogynistic epithets at them, according to the DA’s office. One of the carjackings was caught on a bank’s security video, and the jury asked to watch the strange footage — which happens in a 30-second flash — over and over again, Coleman said: “He had this part of his skill set down to a perfection.”
Because of Perryman’s vigorous defense and many changes of heart on who should represent him, Coleman said, the DA’s office had to go to extra lengths, no matter the expense, to track down victims and witnesses — the office flew four people out for the trial from all around the country.
“It was certainly the most violent and bizarre behavior that I’ve ever prosecuted,” said Coleman, who also serves as Grand Jury Adviser in the office.
— Kate Moser