Murder Trial Focuses on SJPD Use of Tasers

Back in 2006, Jorge Trujillo was allegedly beaten up in San Jose by two strangers, Daniel Miller, 19, and Edward Sample, 20, wielding baseball bats. He managed to stumble away from the scene, and got over a mile away, bumping into cars along the way according to police. Finally, someone called 911 and reported him to the police. When they arrived, Trujillo refused to speak with them or even let them approach, so the officers did what they were trained to do: they tased him. Trujillo died in hospital the next day.

With the murder trial underway in San Jose, the question being asked is to what degree did the tasing contribute to his death? Would he have died from the beating alone, meaning that Miller and Sample are guilty of murder, or was it the tasing that pushed him over the edge?

Deputy DA Daniel Carr argues that it was the beating alone that killed him. The medical examiner at the time disagrees, but Dr. Christopher Happy now works in Milwaukee, and will not be brought to San Jose to testify.

Miller and Sample were both minors at the time of the attack, but they could still be convicted of murder. According to Justice Jerome Brock, the DA must simply prove that they acted with “conscious disregard of the danger to human life.”  Community activists led by Raj Jayadev are not quite so convinced. “The amount of force used by the police against him was excessive and led to his death, and yet they are not charged,” he said.
Read More at KLIV.
Read More at the Mercury News.



  1. Wow lots of details missing from this story.  Like a Wikimedia story or something. And mentioning Raj just cheapens it further.

  2. This article states: “Trujillo refused to speak with them or even let them approach, so the officers did what they were trained to do: they tased him.”

    I believe that to be a false statement that shows a rather obvious bias against police.

    Can the reporter, Danny Wool, cite a credible source (i.e. someone other than Raj) that would support the claim that officers are “trained” to tase suspects who “refused to speak with them or even let them approach”?

  3. Raj with constant whining that police are always wrong regardless of circumstances or facts, biased comments and never helping San Jose’s community work together to solve community problems is an embarrassment

    Raj has joined NAACP’s Moore and Euro American Dale Warner activist widely recognized talking for himself or few angry unreasonable people having no credibility even among San Jose’s many well meaning community activists so it is time that they leave San Jose

  4. I find it odd that Raj seems more concerned about what the Police did as opposed to the two who beat this person senseless with bats non the less. I honestly just don’t get this. If they hadn’t beaten the guy in the first place this just wouldn’t be an issue and this poor man would still be alive.

    Are these two criminals even in jail or being tried for beatening this guy up with baseball bats? And no, I won’t rely on the Merc to provide me with unbias facts on the case.

    • I just looked into this story and found out these two are on trial. My hope is that if found guilty of the crime of beating this man to death, that they will be convicted and sentenced to life.

      How sad is it that people like this are beating, killing, shooting, and stabbing innocent people/children because they mistake them for gang members, or kill them with stray bullets? What is the world coming to?

      • I can see if these boys were gangbangers,or thugs,or even that stupid to commit such a crime.But they are not!I know them both.One of them is my brother,and I am torn apart by these accusations!They were convicted of 1st degree murder and sentenced to life-but WHY?There was no evidence(no blood,no fingerprints,no weapon-nothing)-but there was 1 eyewitness who in court couldnt even say if it was them or not.The actual person who committed the crime got a slap on the hand for pointing fingers!Blaming these 2 kids just to save his own behind.I have nothing else to say…..

  5. Actually, the homeowner told the police he believed that Trujillo had a concealed weapon.

    90 minutes after the fight, the man was weilding a garden hoe and refused to put it down or talk to police after trying to break into cars.

    He was tazed 21 times as well as hit with batons.

    Yet his death is blamed on the fight??  The San Jose cops are responsible for other tazer deaths as well.

    There are currently 2 in jail facing murder, a third was given 3 years (the same amount the two awaiting trial for murder have already been sitting in jail) in a plea deal.

    Something is very wrong when the judge prohibits the number of tazer hits from being mentioned at trial.

  6. The official ‘record’ says it was actually 4 supposedly present @ the time of attack. 3 of which were supposedly involved in the attack. – 1 of the 4 ended up fingering the other 3.. & UNLIKE the 3 that are now accused – He was not a juvenile, he did have a prior criminal record, he lived in neighborhood where the attack happened, & conveniently he didn’t have to face any charges at all in return for his cooperation in turning in the other 3. Huh?! But none of this will be known to very many.
    The ‘2 (alleged) attackers’ on trial now were NOT affiliated or in ANY way involved in gang activity. They were just your basic skater punk teens.. From a totally different neighborhood (that has relatively no gang activity).
    So there’s no motivation for attack based on this reasoning. They wouldn’t even have cared if he was or wasn’t a ‘scrap’.
    The attack happened in January 2006. They didn’t identify the alleged attackers until Dec. 2006 – After the adult male involved (that I mentioned earlier) fingered them.
    The SJPD lost the civil suite already that the victims family filed. The outcome (if they get the cash) is still pending however.. Until this trial is determined. Hmmmmm….
    There are literally dozens & dozens of oddities involved beyond this. Procedure thats questionable. Officials in all areas involved that common sense can tell harbor some bias or motivation involved in their decisions. Etc.
    Last thing I’ll say is that these boys have been incarcerated now for 3 years!! Pending their ‘speedy trial’

  7. I grew up with Daniel Miller since we were 2 years old. He wouldnt have done anything unless it was self defense.  Let Daniel go and charge the police with the murders for once! If we don’t they are going to keep using excessive force!

  8. I believe that the police did it. Look at how many people have did by a taser. I also think that you can’t always believe what the cops say. They get away with so much these days it not even funny. I believe there needs to be a retrial.

  9. My concerns is, why would the police taser someone 20 times. Once or twice is good enough.Isn’t there guildlines on how many times to taser someone? Who’s in charged of training the taser classes? Is this what thier trained to do.Police misconduct is over used.It needs to be brought to attention, otherwise it will continue.

  10. First of all, the idiot coroner is thankfully out of Santa Clara County for a reason.  Despite overwhelming medical evidence to the contrary. “Dr.” Happy took every opportunity to put forth his own personal opinion that Tasers killed people. Dr. Happy was repeatedly embarrassed in several forums, including court, for making false statements that were repudiated by other more credible sources.  In nearly every single case of a person dying after being subjected to a Taser the medical evidence has shown that the Taser was not the primary cause of death.

    What you have here is the typical anti-police crowd searching for any reason to criticize police tactics.  The same idiots were whining when pepper spray came out demanding that it be banned as well.  All kinds of spurious allegations of deaths from pepper spray were being printed in the usual yellow rags even though every reputable medical organization said that pepper spray alone was not lethal.

    When will you people get it?  Tasers are less than lethal force.  No accredited medical group has ever declared otherwise and believe you me, if there were reputable doctors that could prove a Taser is a killer, they would.  There are certainly people who die after being shot with a Taser but there are always other factors that are far more responsible. 

    I would also like to know what these anti-Taser people would like the police to do when they are confronted with a person who poses a threat to others.  Back in the day a cop had a gun, billy club and his voice.  If the suspect decided to resist and voice commands didn’t work, the cop beat them with a club or shot them.  Is this where you anti-police snivelers want to go back to?  Why don’t you cop haters just admit to what you really want, the disbanding of all law enforcement.  Let’s just cut to the chase and identify the real agenda here.  Then again, I kind of like the idea of cops yelling at people to stop and when they refuse, the cop just leaves and the public can fend for themselves.  I suspect the level of force used by a civilian would be far greater than even the cops.  Our already bloated attorney ranks would swell by a bazillion with all the lawsuits against citizens claiming self-defense.

    • This was a completely ignorant thing to write about this article. If you really want to “cut to the chase and identify the real agenda here” let’s do it. The real agenda has to do with why these police officers felt the need to tase a person 21 different times. The fact that this was even omitted from the trial shows a bigger problem, the fact that the city of San Jose is aware of the police brutality problem, and is attempting to shield it by declaring innocence on the part of the cops who were called to the scene and shifting the blame onto two kids. Granted, they aren’t totally innocent and complete saints. I can say that and acknowledge it, even though Daniel Miller is my cousin. Surely, they shouldn’t get off scot-free, but the justice department should have called into question the issue of the amount of times that the victim was tasered. While there are a lot of people to blame here, the whole point is that there’s also a reason that San Jose is an “anti-police” crowd. why? because we’ve had problems with police brutality before. This is nothing new, others have been killed at the hands of the police department in the past.

  11. My honest opinion….its all B.S.-I personally think that the SJPD should be responsible for the death.The story that is stated here has false information,and to me;is completely ridiculous!

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