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O.C. father gets 25 years to life for drowning son to avoid paying child support

A Fullerton man who killed his 4-year-old son to avoid paying child support was sentenced today to 25 years to life in prison, according to the Orange County district attorney’s office.

Gideon Walter Omondi, 38, was convicted of first-degree murder and attempted murder with premeditation and deliberation in September after drowning his son Richie in the bathtub of his Fullerton apartment in 2006.

Orange County social workers had received three calls about possible abuse before the child's death, but said they never had enough evidence to act.

Omondi was a Kenyan student studying mechanical engineering at Cal State Fullerton in 2004 when his wife and son came to the U.S. to join him. He reportedly wanted to send them back to Kenya because it was too expensive to support them in Orange County.

Omondi and his wife, Hellen Mwangi, ultimately divorced and the pair shared custody of their child. But Omondi became angry that his wages would be garnished to support Mwangi and his son, according to authorities.

After a family court hearing in January 2006, he tried to kill his son and himself by parking his car and dousing it in gasoline and climbing into the trunk with his son, according to the prosecution. He allegedly intended to set the car on fire, but a California Highway Patrol officer interrupted the plan and Omondi reportedly told the officer he and his son were sleeping in the car.

In September 2006, Omondi picked up his son from daycare and took him to his apartment for the weekend. On Sunday night, he drowned Richie, tucked his body into bed, and drove to the Fullerton police station and confessed. He pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity, but jurors found him to be legally sane at the time of the incident.

-- Seema Mehta

 
Comments () | Archives (62)

Good thing they let him into the country

a Fullerton man? - why not just call him a "whacked-out foreigner" - it get's the point across more succinctly and accurately

He should have gotten the death sentence. And not just any death sentence but the slowest death we can give him. This animal deserves nothing but death. I hope he gets it good in prison from the other inmates.

Why should he ever get out? Why should society have to pay to keep this animal alive? That poor 4 year old little angel....... When there is no doubt about guilt in cases like this it should be a short and sweet trial, get your affairs in order, then prepare to meet your maker.....

Once his fellow prisoners find out his crime, he's history.

What's the relevance of his national origin to him being a nutcase?
I take it that Americans do not do this kind of thing, right?

So why is the State of California broke again? Oh yeah, because we are having to PAY and support people like this in our prison system at a cost of over $35,000.00 a year instead of just giving them the gas chamber!

The system failed this little boy....what a waste

Why did they just not say he was Kenyan? Afraid of offending someone mayhap?

I think the death penalty is a foolish thing to do. I'm not opposed to making this man suffer for what he did, but why make things short and sweet? Visit the following website to see just how much it costs to keep this man incarcerated instead of killing him. Its surprising how much it costs to kill a man...

http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org/costs-death-penalty

I agree with all the comments. This animal should get the death penalty. why should we have to pay taxes to keep him alive, i believe in an eye for an eye.
I cant understand why people do this to children! If anyone ever hurt my baby he or she better pray the cops catch them first before I do!

Austin, great post and you are absolutly right. Except there is approx 490 prisoners on Death Row and the cost is about 60,000 dollars per year, for each.

Thats more then the average salary, good hard working honest people earn. Maybe if we start executing 1 per week, it may deter crime a little bit also.

Thats just a pipe dream..Sad really

This will likely be an unpopular sentiment, and to preface it, let me say this guy is a murderer, without question. However, does anyone stop to think about the inequity of how child support is calculated? There is no consideration of accountability on the part of the person receiving the child support, as to spending, and often the fee extracted from the payer is brutal. The total wasn't mentioned in the article, true, but could the court system have been a contributing factor in this person's homicidal action?

Death penalty is used less and less because the appeals process costs $500K. so life in prison is "cheaper" than death penalty. and then there is the increased death row housing costs, because they have to be monitored so they don't kill themselves or each other.
hmmmmm, wonder why the prisons take so much of the state budget.

How can anyone be so selfish as to kill their own child?

What a sorry excuse for a man. Did he think he was going to get away with it? How horrible that he put his son through first an attempted murder then an actual murder. He charished money over a little boy. He should be casterated to ensure that he never fathers another child. I hope he rots in prison and the other prisoners give him what he has coming.

What the hell???? I have a four year old son and I cannot fathom even doing something so vile and evil! That is just a coward. Your children look to you for protection and love and for him to do such a thing. I have to shed a tear and feel rage because this guy is an animal who MUST DIE! Inhuman piece of garbage! I hope he is punished by the inmates in the most brutal way!!!!! SICK BASTARD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

What the hell???? I have a four year old son and I cannot fathom even doing something so vile and evil! That is just a coward. Your children look to you for protection and love and for him to do such a thing. I have to shed a tear and feel rage because this guy is an animal who MUST DIE! Inhuman piece of garbage! I hope he is punished by the inmates in the most brutal way!!!!! SICK BASTARD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

"So why is the State of California broke again? Oh yeah, because we are having to PAY and support people like this in our prison system at a cost of over $35,000.00 a year instead of just giving them the gas chamber!"

When will the average moron finally grasp the undisputed fact that the death penalty costs more (sometimes up to twice as much) than to sentence a person to life without parole? That's a fact. Deal with it. If you want to cost the taxpayers waaaay more money by imposing and carrying out the death penalty, then own up to it.

Just feed this dude to the crocodiles. It's a fast but painful dead, the crocodiles are feed and the best part is that is cheap.

to "Bigoted much?", you wrote :What's the relevance of his national origin to him being a nutcase? I take it that Americans do not do this kind of thing, right?" well, you are half right, do you remember Susan Smith, she drowned her two boys so that she could have a relationship with some guy. She was not a foreigner, American, apple pie, 100%.

The only reason it costs more for death row inmates than ordinary prisoners is because of how screwed up the justice system is. The extra costs go towards maximum security housing and the endless appeals process put forward by each inmate which waste valuable dollars and man hours. Those sentenced to death should be put to death immediately, that would make it much, much cheaper than housing the soulless animals. Those who kill have forfeited their right to life. I know it sucks that some people are wrongly convicted and that sucks. There should be a way to address that and still snuff out those who either confess or are convicted without a shawdow of a doubt of their guilt.

This individual (animal is more like it) needs to be put to death. C'mon, this is first degree murder.

Mufon: Your comments are by far the most idiotic I have ever read, EVER, on the web. Please do us ALL a favor and go drown yourself.

What is wrong with the CHP. Umm, a car is doused with gasoline and a father and son were going to sleep in the TRUNK of the car? I think the system failed this young boy back in 2006 by not raising a few more red flags about the stability of the father.

 
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