Orange County District Attorney
Tony Rackauckas, District Attorney
401 Civic Center Drive West
Santa Ana, CA 92701
For Immediate Release
January 18, 2011
Susan Kang Schroeder
TWO INMATES SENTENCED TO 15 YEARS IN PRISON FOR ROLE IN BEATING-DEATH OF FELLOW INMATE BELIEVED TO BE IN CUSTODY FOR CHILD MOLEST
* These are the second and third defendants to be convicted in this case; six additional defendants are charged with murder
SANTA ANA – Two jail inmates were sentenced today for their role in the beating-death of a fellow Theo Lacy Facility inmate who was believed to be a child molester. Christopher Teague, 34, Long Beach, and Jeremy Dezso Culmann, 27, Corona, pleaded guilty to one felony count of voluntary manslaughter and were each sentenced to 15 years in state prison.
Co-defendant Michael Stewart Garten, 25, Santa Ana, pleaded guilty Jan. 11, 2011, to one felony count of voluntary manslaughter and was sentenced to 20 years in state prison. Six additional inmates are charged in this case with one felony count of murder and face a maximum sentence of 25 years to life in state prison if convicted. Those defendants are Garrett Eugene Aguilar, 28, Anaheim, Stephen Paul Carlstrom, 42, Anaheim, Miguel Angel Guillen, 48, Santa Ana, Eric Charles Miller, 25, Huntington Beach, Jared Louis Petrovich, 26, Tustin, and Raul Villafana, 24, Santa Ana. Miller is scheduled for a pre-trial hearing on July 15, 2011, at 9:00 a.m. in Department C-35, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana. The remaining five defendants are scheduled to face a jury trial Feb. 18, 2011, at 9:00 a.m. in Department C-35, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.
On Oct. 5, 2006, Teague, Culmann, and a group of inmates targeted inmate John Chamberlain because they believed him to be a child molester. Chamberlain was in custody on possession of child pornography charges. These inmates are accused of beating Chamberlain repeatedly inside a cell in the jail facility by punching, kicking, and stomping on him. Teague and Cullman punched Chamberlain multiple times at the onset of the attack and then left the cell as other inmates continued to beat the victim. Chamberlain was transported to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
A Special Criminal Grand Jury (SCGJ) was empanelled in May 2007 at the request of the Orange County District Attorney’s Office (OCDA) to investigate Chamberlain’s death. The full report detailing the finding of the SCGJ was released by the OCDA April 7, 2008. To view this report, visit the OCDA website at www.orangecountyda.com/docs/chamberlain_report.pdf.
Senior Deputy District Attorney Ebrahim Baytieh and Deputy District Attorney Keith Bogardus of the Homicide Unit are prosecuting all of the defendants in this case.