Lee Leeds Gets Life in Prison Without Parole | News
By Keith Carls - email
SANTA MARIA – Lee Leeds will spend the rest of his life in prison believing he shot and killed four people at his family-owned Santa Maria junk yard, including his own father, in self-defense.
Leeds pleaded guilty by reason of insanity for the shooting rampage at the Black Road Auto junk yard in March of 2008.
His defense was it was all in self defense, his public defender saying his client suffers from paranoid schizophrenia and delusions and believed his victims were trying to kill him.
A jury agreed that Lee Leeds is mentally ill, but it also found Leeds was sane when he gunned down his victims, execution-style, at the junk yard.
A bearded Leeds heard from family members of his victims before sentence was handed down.
The father of one of his victims, Terry Majan, called Leeds a coward and demanded he look at him while he was giving his victim impact statement.
Leeds never looked up from the table he was sitting at in court.
"I wanted him to look at me, I wanted him to see what hatred looks like", said Juan Majan outside court after the sentencing, "look at my eyes, true hatred, not something seen in movies or a magazine or anything else, but true hatred from a father to a son to the murdering dog that killed him."
Other family members said Leeds' deadly shooting rampage has forever disrupted their lives and the lives of their offspring.
Before being sentenced, Leeds delivered his own statement in his court.
In a rambling, ten minute diatribe that made no mention of any remorse, sorrow or regret for his actions, Leeds defended his shooting rampage by saying it was self defense claiming his victims, including his own father Robert Leeds, were part of an elaborate marijuana-smuggling operation backed by a Mexican drug cartel.
Leeds said when he refused to be involved, his victims had conspired to kill him at the junkyard.
"I don't think I could have found another way out", Leeds told the court, "I would still have been shot, beaten, knifed and thrown into a tractor bucket and dumped into a hole."
Judge Ed Bullard was not swayed and gave Leeds four, consecutive 25-years-to-life in prison sentences, one for each of his victims, without the possibility of parole.
Leeds was also ordered to pay tens of thousands of dollars in restitution to the family members of his victims.
Central Coast News could not find anyone from the Leeds family at his sentencing.