A Valley inmate granted a special release to attend his sister’s funeral is facing even more charges after not returning to jail. And it turns out, there was no funeral.
43-year-old Johnny Castanada asked a judge for a compassionate release to attend his sister’s funeral on Wednesday. The release was granted, but Castanada never came back. Deputies found him Thursday afternoon near the train station in Hanford and re-arrested him. The Sheriff’s Office later learned there was no funeral.
“On top of that, we received a phone call earlier in the afternoon from his sister who stated she was not deceased and not having a funeral today,” Kings County Sheriff’s Commander Mark Bevens said.
A compassionate release is a program that has existed in California for decades, though defense attorney David Mugridge says it is rare.