Released by: District Attorney
For Immediate Release
Man Gets 10 Years, 4 Months In Prison For Beating 74 Year-Old Mother With Cast Iron Pan
Santa Rosa, CA – February 17, 2017 – Defendant Robert Churich, 58 years-old of Santa Rosa, was sentenced today by the Honorable Peter Ottenweller to ten years and four months in state prison after having been found guilty at trial last December. Churich was found guilty by the jury of physical abuse of an elder, preventing a witness from contacting assistance, assault with a deadly weapon, vehicle theft, unlawful use of victim’s debit card, and an additional enhancement for personally inflicting great bodily injury.
District Attorney Ravitch stated, “This defendant violently attacked his mother with multiple weapons causing serious injuries. The assault was unprovoked, and the defendant noted shortly after he was apprehended that he had enjoyed striking her. Clearly this defendant earned a lengthy prison sentence.”
The charges resulted from an October 5, 2015 incident where Churich attacked his elderly mother after she asked him to move out of her house. Churich forcibly prevented his mother from calling police after she walked out of the house, and then struck her on the head with a cast iron pan as she lay on the floor of her garage. The force of the assault caused the pan to break. Churich then struck her on the head with a second pan which also broke. After being struck in the head a final time, with a third pan, the victim was able to run out of the garage and seek help.
The victim suffered injuries to her entire body, including scalp, arms, legs, and torso. She also sustained a concussion, and at trial testified that she was suffering from side effects more than a year after the assault.
After the victim fled the garage, Churich stole her vehicle and drove with her dog to a nearby shopping center where he removed its collar and released it into a parking lot. Churich fled Sonoma County and was able to avoid apprehension until the following day when he was spotted driving the stolen vehicle and arrested by Sonoma County Sheriff’s Detective Jesse Hanshew.
The case was prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney Carla Rodriguez, and assisted by District Attorney Investigator Matthew Stapleton. Detective Jesse Hanshew of the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Department headed the investigation.