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Assault case may be settled

Case involving assault, torture charges goes back to Burbank court as attorneys seek to reach settlement.

January 08, 2010|By Veronica Rocha

PASADENA — Attorneys representing five people who were charged with beating and torturing two loan modification agents asked for more time Thursday to reach a potential settlement.

Attorney Stephen Wegman and three other defense attorneys asked Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Teri Schwartz if the case could be extended to Jan. 27 to accommodate negotiations on a possible settlement with the district attorney.

Schwartz sent the case back to Burbank Superior Court to be settled.

The defendants — Mario Gonzales, 47, of Glendale; Marissa Parker, 49, of Sylmar; Gustavo Canez, 36, of Los Angeles; and La Cañada residents Mary Ann Parmelee and Daniel Weston, both 52 — appeared in court Thursday morning wearing blue inmate uniforms, linked together with handcuffs.

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All five suspects were charged with two counts of torture; two counts of false imprisonment by violence; two counts of assault by means likely to produce great bodily harm; two counts of assault with a deadly weapon; two counts of assault with a firearm and two counts of second-degree robbery.

They were being held in Los Angeles County jail in lieu of $1.1-million bail, according to court documents.

The alleged attack occurred Oct. 20 on the 400 block of South Verdugo Road in Glendale, where loan modification agents Lamond Dean and Luis Garcia ran a lending business.

The pair were reportedly helping Parmelee and Weston modify their home loan to avoid foreclosure, according to the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office.

After a dispute arose over their loan’s modification, Parmelee, Weston and the other defendants allegedly planned a meeting with the agents and attacked them in the office, according to the district attorney’s office.

One of the agents escaped and went to a local hospital. Police found the other inside the office.


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