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Parolee Gets 115 Years Under Three Strikes

District Attorney Jan Scully announced today that the Honorable Judge Ben Davidian sentenced James Earl Lawhead to 115 years to life in prison for a string of crimes in Citrus Heights and North Highlands in the summer of 2010. Lawhead was sentenced under the three strikes law.


On July 25, 2010, Lawhead disguised himself and robbed the store manager of Blockbuster Video at 7291 Greenback Lane at gunpoint as she was walking over to the bank to make a store deposit. After a diligent investigation by the Citrus Heights Police Department, a warrant was issued for Lawhead’s arrest. By then, Lawhead had absconded from parole.

He was eventually tracked down by the Sacramento Sheriff’s Department in the early morning of September 8, 2010 and engaged officers in a two-hour standoff with a loaded gun held to his head in in front of the McDonald’s restaurant at 5301 Elkhorn Boulevard.

The Sheriff’s Department Special Enforcement Detail eventually used teargas to safely bring Lawhead into custody. The gun in his hand was stolen in a burglary two days earlier, where Lawhead’s girlfriend left a fingerprint behind.

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