German architect gets one-year sentence in death of L.A. firefighter

A German architect accused of recklessly installing a fireplace in his Hollywood Hills mansion, leading to a firefighter’s death in February 2011, is expected to serve about six months in jail after pleading no contest Friday to involuntary manslaughter. Gerhard Becker, 49, was sentenced to one year in jail as a condition of his probation, but will probably spend only about half of that behind bars due to time already served and other factors. Prosecutors had sought four years in jail.
http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-german-architect-sentenced-20140103,0,4315131.story#ixzz2pNYvK5da
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On 1/3/2014 4:57 PM, Fat-Dumb and Happy wrote:

The prosecutors are making a big deal out of the guy's case by blaming him for the death of a firefighter. When the guy gets out of prison, he will be deported because of an expired visa. The prosecution of the architect is meant to send a message to those who violate the law. Does this mean that Mexican illegal immigrants will now be deported after a prison stay to send a message that our laws should be respected? o_O
TDD
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On Thursday, January 16, 2014 10:08:05 PM UTC-5, The Daring Dufas wrote:

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20140103,0,4315131.story#ixzz2pNYvK5da

That's a mighty fine rhetorical question, my friend. The latest example of the lunacy in CA is that their supreme court just ruled that an illegal immigrant has to be given a license to practice law. That's right. He's here illegally, but he'll be able to go into any court in CA and respresent clients before a judge, police, etc. What a marvelous time it is here. We're increasingly spying on our own citizens without warrants, and at the same time, those that are here illegally get to show up in court and practice law.
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More on topic for a.h.r, it has been said here many times that insurance companies would still pay for damages from a fire caused by DIY electrical installation. Well, perhaps what been said (I don't recall exactly) was that no has been able to cite a case where an insurance didn't pay because of a DIY electrical installation.
So the question is, if a firefighter dies fighting a fire caused by a DIY electrical installation, could the homeowner be jailed even as the insurance company is paying to rebuild the house?
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On Friday, January 24, 2014 11:51:00 PM UTC-5, DerbyDad03 wrote:

-20140103,0,4315131.story#ixzz2pNYvK5da

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Potentially yes. Just ask OJ. The results of criminal cases and civil can be different. However most insurance policies have exclusions for criminal acts, eg if you're trying to run over your wife with the car and drive it into the living room, paying for that damage isn't covered. How exactly those clauses are worded, interpreted, adjudicated, etc in the policy in question would determine the outcome. It would be interesting to find out.
You also have to wonder how dumb the architect was to not only not get permits, apparently go out of his way to hide the fact that he was going to put the fireplace in, etc., but then to also get it installed in such a half-assed way that it immediately caused a fire. My first guess might be that since it's LA, the type of fireplace he may have wanted was not allowed, eg woodburning perhaps? So, he couldn't have gotten the permit. But you would think an architect could still manage to have something put in that would be safe.
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