|For Immediate Release
Case # 04CF3689
February 17, 2009
|Susan Kang Schroeder
Public Affairs Counsel
MAN SENTENCED TO LIFE WITHOUT PAROLE FOR SHOOTING AND MURDERING BROTHER’S GIRLFRIEND AND HER 15-YEAR-OLD DAUGHTER
SANTA ANA – A Santa Ana man was sentenced today to life without the possibility of parole for shooting and murdering his brother’s live-in girlfriend and her 15-year-old daughter. Peter Nong Le, 64, was found guilty on Feb. 11, 2008, of two felony counts of murder and sentencing enhancement allegations for committing multiple murders and the personal discharge of a firearm causing death. The defendant, who had pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity, was found to be sane by a jury on Jan. 15, 2009, in a re-trial on the sanity phase. In February 2008, a jury was unable to reach a unanimous decision regarding Le’s case, deadlocking 11 to one supporting a sanity verdict.
Victims Tuyet Le, 46, and her 15-year-old daughter, Jennifer Cu, were living in Santa Ana with Tuyet Le’s boyfriend and his elderly parents. Defendant Le is the brother of Tuyet Le’s boyfriend. The defendant moved into the Santa Ana home with his parents, brother, and the victims one month prior to the murder. He became increasingly angry with Tuyet Le because he believed she was disrespecting him and his parents by calling him messy and unemployed.
On Dec. 14, 2004, Le used a rifle and a handgun and went into the backyard, where Tuyet Le was working in the garden, and murdered her by shooting her once in the chest. He then returned to the kitchen and murdered Jennifer by shooting her multiple times in the head and chest.
After shooting the two victims, Le tied his father’s legs to prevent him from running out of the house. He gathered ammunition and multiple guns to prepare himself for a shoot-out with the police, but his father was able to convince him not to shoot at any officers. Le then called the Santa Ana Police Department and told them he had committed a crime and that he wanted to surrender to the police.
Senior Deputy District Attorney Ebrahim Baytieh of the Homicide Unit prosecuted this case.