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Sacramento DA / Media / 2015 Archives / 8.19.15: Case of Interest: James Peter O’Brien & Renee Winchell

Case of Interest: James Peter O’Brien & Renee Winchell

DATE:  August 19, 2015

CASE:   James Peter O’Brien & Renee Winchell

PROSECUTOR:  Deputy District Attorney Jennifer Tucker, Prison Crimes Unit

District Attorney Anne Marie Schubert announced today that James Peter O’Brien was convicted by jury of possession of methamphetamine in a penal institution and possession of methamphetamine for sale.

On February 23, 2014, O’Brien’s wife, Renee Winchell, was visiting him at Folsom State Prison.  An officer observed the two perform a series of actions indicating O’Brien was trying to hide contraband.   During an unclothed body search of O’Brien, his boxers and state-issued t-shirt were positioned and modified to allow easy access to his buttocks.  He was later found to have possession of a bag of methamphetamine, amounting to approximately 500 doses and worth between $8,000 and $10,000 within the prison.  O’Brien was transported to a hospital after showing symptoms of a drug overdose.  He tested positive for opiates, amphetamines, and THC.

Methamphetamine was later located in Winchell’s rental vehicle. She pled to felony possession of methamphetamine in a penal institution and was sentenced to 180 days.

O’Brien was previously convicted of murder in 1983.  He faces a maximum potential sentence of 8 years in prison.  Sentencing is set for October 2, 2015 at 10:00 a.m. in Department 26 before the Honorable Curtis Fiorini.

 

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