Defendant Brandon Byron Cooper, 30 years old of Petaluma, was sentenced today by the Honorable Robert LaForge to serve 15 years to life in prison, plus an additional 9 years, after being found guilty of three felony sexual assault crimes in March of 2019 following a court trial.
District Attorney Ravitch stated, “This defendant has repeatedly victimized young and vulnerable members of this community. His life sentence will provide protection for others and hopefully assist with healing from the emotional turmoil his victims have suffered.”
The charges resulted from an investigation prompted by an 11-year-old child disclosing to his mother that he was sexually assaulted by Cooper a few years earlier. The investigation revealed that Cooper had engaged in oral copulation with the child. At the time, Cooper was a family friend who had frequent access to the child and had earned the child’s trust. At sentencing, the victim’s mother referred to Cooper as cold, calculating, violent, and manipulative. She expressed that Cooper does not deserve to ever feel freedom again.
In the March court trial, the child testified about Cooper’s actions, and evidence was introduced related to a separate incident in which Cooper was previously convicted of sexual battery. The prior incident involved Cooper causing his friend’s developmentally delayed sister to orally copulate him.
Cooper’s latest offenses are considered violent felonies. However, in light of the passage of Proposition 57 in 2016, CDCR guidelines now allow violent felons and offenders sentenced to an indeterminate term to reduce their sentences by 20 percent. With Cooper’s sentence of 15 years to life plus 9 years it is anticipated Cooper will first become eligible for parole consideration after serving approximately 19 years of his sentence. Both Cooper’s prior conviction for sexual battery, as well as his latest convictions, require Cooper to register as a sex offender if granted parole.
The case was prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney Andrew Lukas, assisted by District Attorney Investigator Ken Pistorio. Detective Rick Boehm of the Santa Rosa Police Department headed the investigation.