SANTA ANA (CBSLA.com) — Authorities said a 54-year-old career criminal has been sentenced to 75 years to life behind bars for robbing two Orange County banks and for trying to stick up a third two years ago.
David Dennis Hill did not use a gun or hurt anyone during the commission of the crimes and his attorney asked the judge for leniency.
But Orange County Superior Court Judge John D. Conley said the state’s three strikes law left him little choice or discretion.
“You’re intelligent and articulate, but you are also a bank robber,” the judge said.
Hill has an extensive rap sheet including five bank robbery convictions and more than a dozen other felonies. While being admonished by the judge, he nodded in agreement.
In a written statement to the court, Hill described himself as state-born and prison-raised. He copped to his bank robbery convictions in 1990 and 2000 and said “here I am again.”
The judge tabulated credit for time served and various fines — none of which Hill could pay — and wished Hill luck.
“Mr. Hill, good luck to you. You know I’m not doing this because I hate you. It’s just the law,” Conley said.
While already on parole in 2012, Hill robbed a Bank of America in Huntington Beach netting $1,900, according to court records. He tried to rob a Bank of America in Anaheim 11 days later but ran out when a teller “froze.” He also robbed a Union Bank in Huntington Beach the next day, getting a little more than $1,300.
Hill’s attorney noted that her client’s life of crime started when he was a juvenile and progressed because of substance abuse.
While the judge said he remained sympathetic, Hill “fit the bill” of a third-strike offender. Under that law, a person convicted of third serious or violent felony can be sentenced to 25 years to life.