Two men were sentenced last Thursday on charges of voluntary manslaughter related to the death of Pats II Cocktails’ bouncer Terie Colecchi.
Francisco Cobarruvias Jr., 35, of Redondo Beach received a sentence of six years in prison and Rene Anthony Avina, 23, of Carson received 11 years. Avina’s sentence was more severe on account of his previous convictions.
The fatal fight in question erupted when Colecchi, 49, stopped Cobarruvias and Avina from entering Pats II Cocktails on PCH at 1:40 a.m. on June 2 of last year.
A surveillance video shows Colecchi throwing the first punch, and Cobarruvias and Avina aggressively punching and kicking the bouncer after he collapsed. The entire incident lasted about 40 seconds. Colecchi was transported to a nearby hospital, where he died of a heart attack induced by both blunt force trauma and methamphetamine usage, according to an autopsy surgeon’s report.
Both Cobarruvias and Avina fled the scene that night, but later turned themselves in to the police on separate occasions. Upon being arrested they were charged with murder, but in December they agreed to plead no contest to voluntary manslaughter charges as part of a plea bargain. The alternative would have been facing murder charges before a jury.
The defense argued that the two men were acting out of self-defense.
“The question wasn’t: Did they have the right to self-defense? I believe everybody would agree they did have the right to self-defense. The question was: Did they use too much force in self-defense?” Cobarruvias’ lawyer Jeffrey Gray said.
He also noted that blunt force trauma was not the sole cause of death. The court found it to be a substantial factor and sentenced the two men accordingly. ER