Murderer’s Life Without Parole Sentence Commuted by Governor

VENTURA, California – District Attorney Gregory D. Totten announced today that Governor Brown has commuted (reduced) the sentence of convicted murderer Jahn Vann.? In 1980, Vann was convicted of? the special circumstances? robbery-murder of Daniel Nack.? The commutation means that Vann’s sentence of life without the possibility of parole is commuted to a term of 40 years to life, allowing the parole board to return Vann to society if it finds him suitable.

In 1979, Vann and a co-defendant robbed three victims inside a residence. Vann wore a mask he made for himself as he held the men at gunpoint in the home. When victim Daniel Nack lunged for Vann’s gun, a struggle ensued, and Vann’s co-defendant? fled out a window.? During the struggle, two shots were fired, one of which struck Nack in the face, killing him. Victim Marcelino Cumplido tried to overtake Vann, breaking two bowls over his head and attempting to stab him with a steak knife while Vann struggled with Nack. Vann let go of Nack and fired at Cumplido, narrowly missing him, then fled the residence.

Although Governor Brown lauds Vann’s conduct behind bars and characterizes the killing as accidental, he omits any reference to the gunshot Vann fired at the additional victim or to the anguish Vann caused to Nack’s family and friends. The Governor’s decision was made over the objections of the District Attorney and the victim’s family.

The commutation of Vann’s sentence was among 95 convicted murderers whose sentences the Governor commuted on December 24.

A copy of the District Attorney’s letter of opposition regarding the commutation and the Governor’s statement.?18-129 Vann (Hughes)


The Ventura County District Attorney’s Office is the public prosecutor for the county’s 850,000 residents. The office employs approximately? 280 employees including attorneys, investigators, victim advocates, and other professional support staff who strive to seek justice, ensure public safety, and protect the rights of crime victims.

Follow the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office on Twitter @VenturaDAOffice

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2 Responses to Murderer’s Life Without Parole Sentence Commuted by Governor

  1. bruce boyer December 31, 2018 at 3:31 pm

    Only 95 murderers??? Brown is an evil man w/o any reckoning of what justice is supposed to be.

  2. Jane LeMond Alvarez December 27, 2018 at 9:47 am

    I guess a life is not worth a life


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