Judge Sentences Murderer Then Presides At His Wedding

Killer gets 53 years before getting hitched to his girlfriend

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Judge Patricia Cookson gave Danne Desbrow two probable life sentences on Sept. 17. The San Diego Superior Court judge handed down a 53-years-to-life-in-prison sentence to Desbrow for first-degree murder, then moments later, she officiated at his wedding ceremony.

Desbrow appeared in court over the 2003 killing of Kevin Santos. During the two-month trial, Desbrow proposed to his girlfriend, Destiny, with whom he had been reunited earlier this year, after the pair had not seen each other since high school. Cookson then agreed to marry them.

Members of the victim’s family were escorted out of the courtroom after the sentencing, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune, while the couple’s relatives remained. After the ceremony, the couple kissed and Cookson returned to her chambers, reappearing moments later with two pieces of vanilla Bundt cake on paper plates with plastic forks.

A witness told the Tribune that the judge didn’t bring out the whole cake because she was concerned about slicing the dessert with a knife while Desbrow was present.