Michael Vincent Gutierrez, 27, has been sentenced to at least eight years in state prison for burglarizing the empty home of a Sonoma family killed in a car accident just days before.
“This was a particularly callous burglary, given the circumstances,” said Chief Deputy District Attorney Spencer Brady, who stated satisfaction with the sentence. “A predatory criminal has been taken off the streets and will not victimize anyone else for a long time.”
Gutierrez received the maximum term of six years for the burglary and two additional years for two separate prior prison commitments. An additional two years of prison time could be added to his sentence pending the outcome of another burglary trial, in San Mateo County.
The break-in occurred November 30, 2009. Gutierrez and his girlfriend, Amber Marie True, 30, plead guilty, but maintained they were unaware of the deadly accident and had chosen the house at random.
The couple was traced to San Mateo, where police found in their possession items stolen form the Maloney home, including a vehicle driven away from the Freyer Creek residence.
They entered the house through the garage, kicking in the kitchen door and brutally ransacking rooms throughout the home.
The unthinkable crime came at a time the community was still reeling from news that John and Susan Maloney, and their two young children, had perished in a car crash on Highway 37 and Lakeside.