SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Gov. Gavin Newsom has blocked parole for the killer of a developmentally disabled California man who was buried alive, it was announced Friday.
Newsom on Thursday reversed an August decision by a state panel to grant parole to David Weidert, the Fresno County district attorney announced. Weidert can considered for release again in a year.
“I have considered the evidence in the record that is relevant to whether Mr. Weidert is currently dangerous,” Newsom wrote. “When considered as a whole, I find the evidence shows that he currently poses an unreasonable danger to society if released from prison at this time.”
Weidert, 57, was granted parole previously in 2016 and 2018. However, then-Gov. Jerry Brown reversed both decisions.
Weidert was sentenced to life in prison for killing 20-year-old Fresno-area resident Michael Morganti in 1980 to cover up a $500 burglary Weidert had committed. Morganti was a look-out in the burglary.
“When Mike spoke to law enforcement, Weidert silenced him,” the Fresno County DA’s office said in a statement.
Weidert, who was 17 at the time, lured Morganti to a car and took him to an isolated location. He and a 16-year-old accomplice then forced Morganti to dig his own grave, beat him with a baseball bat and a shovel, stabbed him with a knife and choked him with a telephone wire. However, Morganti eventually suffocated after being buried alive.