A Santa Maria man who killed four people, including his father, at a Santa Maria auto yard in 2008 was sentenced Thursday to spend the rest of his life in prison.
Lee Leeds received four consecutive life sentences — for a total of 100 years — plus a term of life without the possibility of parole, during a hearing in Superior Court in Santa Maria.
Leeds, 35, previously pleaded guilty to the first-degree murders of his father, Robert Leeds, who owned Black Road Auto, Dave Duboise, Ricardo Leal and Terry Majan during a shooting rampage on March 18, 2008.
The case then entered a sanity phase, and a jury in Superior Court in Santa Maria decided — after a six-week trial and 3½ days of deliberations — that Leeds was sane at the time of the killings.
Had he been found insane, he most likely would have been sent to a mental hospital instead of prison.
“No sentence could ever ameliorate the horrendous, senseless death of these four innocent victims,” District Attorney Joyce Dudley said after the sentencing. “I hope this extraordinary sentence can, however, be the beginning of a healing process for all those who have suffered and continue to suffer as a result of this tragic crime.”
Family of the four victims gave statements to the court detailing how the killings had affected their lives. Leeds also made a statement reiterating his belief that his father and the other victims were planning to kill him.
Defense attorneys had argued previously that Leeds didn’t know right from wrong, and believed he was going to be killed by the Mexican Mafia.
But prosecutors said there was ample evidence that Leeds knew what he was doing when he killed the four men.