One of two gang members accused in vicious beating of UC Berkeley freshman pleads guilty

David White to be sentenced Nov. 21

SAN DIEGO - A gang member whose 12-hour crime spree in San Diego nearly two years ago included the near-fatal beating of an 18-year-old UC Berkeley student pleaded guilty Thursday to premeditated attempted murder and other charges.

David Daniel White, 22, will be sentenced to 17 years to life in prison, plus five years and eight months behind bars, for the Dec. 28, 2011, attack on Grant Richman and other crimes. A sentencing hearing is scheduled for Nov. 21.

Richman was attacked about 12:30 a.m., shortly after arriving in the College area of San Diego to spend the night at a friend's home. Doctors initially thought Richman, of Northridge, wouldn't survive.

According to testimony at a preliminary hearing last year, White and an alleged accomplice, 28-year-old Terrence Lavar Jarvis, began their crime spree about 2:30 p.m. on Dec. 27, 2011, when a man received a "disciplinary" gang-related beating in front of a home in Emerald Hills.

At 11:30 p.m., a woman was robbed at gunpoint in Mountain View. About an hour later, the defendants tried to rob another woman on El Cajon Boulevard in Rolando, police said.

Minutes later, Richman was attacked as he got out of his car in front of his friend's house in the 4600 block of Antioch Place. He was bludgeoned in the head from behind as he placed cupcakes on the roof of his car.

Richman was "viciously and savagely beaten outside the driver's side of his car," Deputy District Attorney Christ Lawson told the judge. "He was left to die in a pool of his own blood."

The young man suffered severe brain trauma and has been undergoing extensive rehabilitation, Richman's parents said. San Diego police Lt. Kevin Rooney said the student's condition continues to improve.

The prosecutor said bludgeoning the victim into a coma could enhance sentences by five years if there is a conviction.

At 2:30 a.m., shots were fired at the house in Emerald Hills where the crime spree began, police said.

Jarvis was arrested in San Diego the day after the attack on Richman for allegedly violating his parole and committing domestic violence.

White was arrested Jan. 17, 2012, in Mesa, Ariz., for a probation violation. A week later, police said they had tied the defendants to the attack on Richman.

Lawson said Jarvis was found to have items belonging to Richman, and bloody clothing tested positive for the victim's DNA. Blood found in White's car also matched Richman's DNA, the prosecutor said.

In addition to attempted murder, White pleaded guilty to assault by means of force likely to produce great bodily injury, robbery, attempted robbery and shooting at an inhabited dwelling. He also pleaded guilty to assaulting a jail deputy and possession of a shank.

Jarvis is scheduled for trial Dec. 2. Because the charges also contain various gang and weapon's allegations, Jarvis faces 157 years to life in state prison if convicted.

Jarvis chose to serve as his attorney, but Judge Jeffrey Fraser advised against it.

Jarvis faces two counts of robbery and one count each of attempted robbery, felony battery and shooting at an inhabited residence. He also has an auto theft case pending against him, according to the prosecutor.

The defendants and White's vehicle were caught on surveillance tape at the scene of the first assault in Emerald Hills, around nine hours before Richman was attacked, Lawson said.

The woman was robbed in the 4500 block of Logan Avenue around 11:30 that night, and Jarvis' cellphone "pinged" at an undisclosed location where her credit cards were subsequently used, according to the prosecutor.

A pizza company worker identified White's car, Lawson said.

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