Charles Anthony Murphy Jr. Found Guilty in Third Re-Trial in Burned Bodies Murder Case

Categories: Court, Crime-iny
Thumbnail image for Iftekhar-Murtaza_in-color_ocda.jpg
Charles Anthony Murphy Jr. was found guilty today of murdering a father and daughter, trying to murder the man's wife and conspiring to murder the parents in a grisly 2007 case that included the bodies of the dead being set afire in an abandoned van. The Mission Hills 27-year-old could get life in state prison without parole, but his yet-to-be-tried partner (Iftekhar Murtaza at right) faces the death penalty.

After hearing the jury's verdict, Orange County Superior Court Judge Thomas Goethals set Murphy's sentencing for Jan. 4.

Murtaza's has a pre-trial hearing scheduled Friday, with opening statements so far to begin a month to the day later.

Murphy, Vitaliy Krasnoperov, 26, of Hollywood, and--it is alleged--Murtaza, 28, of Van Nuys, conspired to murder the parents of Murtaza's ex-girlfriend because then-UC Irvine freshman Shayona Dhanak's devout Hindi family disapproved of her having dated the non-practicing Muslim.

After the break-up, Murtaza is accused of contacting his friend, Krasnoperov, online and telling him in an AOL Instant Messenger (IM) conversation that he wanted to kill Jaypraykash and Leela Dhanak. Murtaza is accused of having an IM discussion with Krasnoperov about ways to murder the victims, including burning their house down or using a hit man. Krasnoperov offered to contact someone whom he knew "used to do this type of work."

On April 26, 2007, Murtaza is accused of having another online IM conversation with Krasnoperov to discuss an upcoming meeting, arranged by Krasnoperov. They are said to have planned to meet to negotiate the murders of the Dhanaks. Krasnoperov instructed Murtaza to obtain a picture of the victims by sending Shayona Dhanak an IM asking for a photograph from her recent family trip to India.

Around 1:30 p.m. on May 21, 2007, Murtaza is accused of contacting and exchanging a series of text messages with his childhood friend, Murphy, and offering him $30,000 "for a job." Murtaza is accused of telling Murphy that they should meet in person to discuss the details. Murphy iagreed to meet and participate in the murders of the Dhanaks that night.

The elder Dhanaks worked together in Irvine, but on May 21, 2007, the husband beat his wife to their Anaheim Hills home by several hours, having arranged to meet the Mrs. there later. Sometime after 6:30 p.m., Murphy and another invader entered the house and forcibly restrained Jaypraykash Dhanak before beating and repeatedly stabbing him. He was left in a bathroom while his attackers awaited the arrival of Leela Dhanak.

But 20-year-old Karishma Dhank arrived home first.

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10 comments
meb220
meb220

I just wanted to say that for Charles being the only African American allegedly involved in this he should of had more African American support groups behind him. Charles did not have enough media attention for his side of the story. That would of lead to a deeper investigation of his case. Also Charles did not have one African American person on the jury and the jury was not serious enough to have a man's life in there hands. God knows Charles' heart and he knows of his innocents. This is only a test for Charles and his family. God with bring him home soon enough. My heart goes out to the Dhanak family and I pray that they find the real African American that the witness seen that night. ( Tall and Skinny) which was not Charles at the time of the murder's.

Mark McDonald
Mark McDonald

Sorry, but this guy just looks capable of that.

949girl
949girl topcommenter

I'm pretty surprised that Murphy was convicted by all 12 jurors..  They had no dna or eyewitnesses placing him at the scene.  The only evidence they really had was some questionable text/IM messaging and cell tower pings that were disputed by experts.  I for sure thought that there was reasonable doubt in this case.

ajthegreat1
ajthegreat1

@949girl Charles Murphy Jr is my cousin and you are so right he should not been found guilty at all, but we are going to win it on appeals. He will come home again. Please keep the prayers because the fight is not over.

949girl
949girl topcommenter

@ajthegreat1 Before anyone thinks I'm pro-murder I'm not, but I do believe you have to be proven beyond a reasonable doubt to be found guilty of first degree murder. It seemed like they had a fairly weak case against Charles and that's why I thought the media kept it out of the news the third time around until the guilty verdict.   No dna, no eyewitnesses.  I know the eyewitness at the park described seeing someone much thinner than him. I think the DA had weak cases against both Murphy and Krasnoperov because they were based solely on IMs and texts which are open to interpretation.  I think both will win their appeals. 

949girl
949girl topcommenter

@buckzilla01 Can you elaborate on the other evidence that the public doesn't know about? 

buckzilla01
buckzilla01

There was allot more than two IM conversations working against him. Krasnoperov would have been at the crime scene if he had not broken his wrist/arm just days before the crime, in his messages to Murtaza he always said " we " could this or that......

buckzilla01
buckzilla01

I sat on the jury that first tried to convict Charles Murphy....... We handled Krasnoperov first, it was a solid case against him, so much evidence against him. We convicted him on Conspiracy to commit murder. He went down with life without the possibility of parole. I think that troubled some of the jurors because he was so young, but there was allot of stuff that the public didn't know about that he was doing that led to the murder of two people and the attempted murder of a third. Wen we started to deliberate on Charles Murphy to all of the jurors the eve evidence pleased him at the scene but three of the jurors didn't have the heart to convict another kid for life. They had enough, it was very stressful and disturbing because of the level of violence in the evidence. I had Murphy Guilty without a doubt though I could not determine from the evidence the role he played at the scene for sure, I know he was there and I feel better that he is off the streets, it it sad that so much of his life will be taken away through all of this, it still is not justice enough for the family that was destroyed. Everyone can say what they think about what should have happened in this case but unless you sit on the jury and see all the facts you can't possibly say what is the right decision.

949girl
949girl topcommenter

@meb220@949girl@ajthegreat1 

I don't think coincidences is enough to convict someone of first degree premeditated murder. Krasnoperov wasn't at the crime scene and the only evidence against him really are two IM conversations. If everyone was held accountable for what they said after midnight a lot of people would be in trouble.  As far as Murphy goes I know the jury asked if they could convict on lesser charges because even they didn't believe he murdered them but because of the jury instructions they felt they had to.  Not to knock Gundy, but he has been responsible for a wrongful conviction in which an innocent man was sentenced to 41 years to life...

 http://www.ocregister.com/news/police-382513-practices-departments.html

meb220
meb220

@949girl @ajthegreat1  It was way more evidence against Krasnoperov than Murphy.   The jury thought it was too many coincidences.  Now for me that's just not enough with out some type of physical evidince. He was guilty by association. Now to me thats just not good enough.   IJS.

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