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Released by: District Attorney
For Immediate Release

Jury Convicts Man of Elder Abuse Crimes

Santa Rosa, CA  –  December 13, 2016  –  Defendant Robert Churich, age 58, was found guilty by a jury on December 9, 2016 of felony assault with a deadly weapon, abuse of an elder adult resulting in great bodily injury, witness intimidation by means of force, and auto theft.  The victim in each of the charges was the defendant's mother, who testified at trial.  The jury was unable to reach a verdict on one count of attempted murder. 

District Attorney Ravitch stated, “Justice was done when the jury returned guilty verdicts on multiple felony charges.  This was a violent incident committed against an elderly women by her own son.  Protection of our senior population is a priority, and we will continue to aggressively prosecute those that choose to victimize the elderly in our community.” 

The charges resulted from an argument between Churich and his elderly mother in October 2015.  The defendant became enraged and assaulted his mother with several cast iron pans that were stored in her garage.  The victim was able to escape and ran to a nearby neighbor’s house for help.  Churich then stole the victim’s vehicle and spent the following 24 hours avoiding the police while using her car and credit card.  Sonoma County Sheriff’s deputies eventually arrested the defendant in Healdsburg.  The victim was treated at Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital for her injuries.

Churich is next scheduled to appear in court on December 14, 2016 at which time a sentencing date will be set by Judge Peter Ottenweller.

The case was prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney Carla Rodriguez, assisted by District Attorney Investigator Matthew Stapleton.  The Sonoma County Sheriff’s Department headed the investigation.


Contact Information

Joe Langenbahn
Media Coordinator
Office of the District Attorney
County of Sonoma
Contact us by Phone
600 Administration Drive
Room 212 J
Santa Rosa, CA 95403
38.466524, -122.726273