My name is Souphiep. I am writing to seek help for a person that I love so dearly...my brother.
I'm hoping our story can be heard and there is help for my brother Sophat Leam. Sophat is serving a life sentence in State Prison in CA. He is being sentenced for a crime he did not commit. He petitioned the courts over and over with no luck. I truly believe if somebody would really take a look at his case, they would realize that there is no evidence for conviction. All witnesses, even the suspected parties involved stated they did not know Sophat. There was also a witness who confirmed that Sophat was in San Diego, CA. when the incident took place in Los Angeles. I will provide you with a brief description on my brother's case for better understanding.
Below is a straight forward summary of his case. September 6, 2002, he was convicted in Orange County. Prior, a robbery had occurred, and one of the robbers got killed in the process. My brother's only mistake was that he had signed a hotel room in his name for the people who were accused of doing the robbery. He did not have any idea that there were going to attempt a robbery. In fact, when the cops came, he stayed to answer all their questions. The police had told my brother themselves that they knew my brother was not there. My brother was cooperative with the officers. Imagine how surprised my family was when we got that dreaded phone call telling us he was arrested and being charged with murder. They accused him of being the "master mind" behind it all. There is no evidence; everything is circumstantial. During the whole trial process, my brother was offered a deal. He believed in his innocence so he stated, "Why should I take a deal? I didn't do anything." As a family, we supported him and continue to until this day.
The first public defender, fought hard for my brother's innocence unlike others who think of it as just another case to do. Due to illness, my brother was assigned another public defender- who in my opinion, acted as if my brother was just another "stereotype criminal". With so much evidence proving his innocence, how could he be convicted to life? He is never going to have another chance like the actual robbers who have a release date...who have been sentenced to lighter sentences...it's just not fair. It's cruel and unusual punishment to give a life sentence to someone who had nothing to do with the crime, and reward lighter sentences to those who did the crime. People should get involved because this is injustice. Unfortunately, our family does not have enough funds to afford a lawyer to appeal. With enough funds we would be able to seek a lawyer who can review his case and prove his innocence. There are many innocent lives behind bars and the justice system needs to be served fairly!