SAN JOSE, Calif. (KGO) -- Shannon O'Connor, the Los Gatos mom accused of throwing drunken sex parties for her son and other teens, was back in court Friday after asking a judge to say what sentence she would receive if she pleaded guilty.
While no sentence was announced, several victims of the alleged crime made their own plea: Maximum jail time for O'Connor.
Prosecutors requested Friday's hearing to present 15 verbal and written victim statements to the judge while O'Connor, back turned to the victims, listened.
"Every time we are in court and victims stand up and have the courage to speak their truth about what happened to them, it is an emotional experience for everyone in the courtroom who is watching," Santa Clara County Deputy District Attorney Rebekah Wise said.
Our cameras were in court Friday, allowed to record video of only O'Connor.
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The Los Gatos resident was charged in 2021 after she was accused of throwing drunken parties for her teen son, where she allegedly encouraged young teens to drink and participate in sex acts.
The victims shared emotional statements telling the judge that their lives will never be the same.
"(It's) A part of me, something I can't run from. I so desperately want my life back," one victim said.
Many of the girls and their parents said they suffer from anxiety, depression and PTSD from lingering emotional and physical symptoms.
Some victims claimed O'Connor moved to Idaho to follow them after they left the Bay Area.
They called O'Connor a criminal, highly deceitful, a sick individual and a dangerous predator - all this while O'Connor just stared on straight ahead.
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"I want to commend the victims and their parents for coming forward in this very difficult situation, to let the judge know about how the actions of Ms. O'Connor continues to affect them to this day, such that it could be considered when the court gives an indicated sentence," Wise said.
In a new court filing Friday, prosecutors claim O'Connor has continued to commit crimes since she was taken into custody - first in Idaho where she was arrested then in San Jose, where she's been jailed since October of 2021.
They claim she pressured her son and other teenagers not to cooperate with investigators, directed her husband to hide her finances and later conspired with a girlfriend she met in jail to smuggle drugs into the Santa Clara County Main Jail and sell them to other inmates.
O'Connor's legal team will meet with the DA's office and the judge privately on May 5 to discuss a possible sentence should O'Connor plead guilty to all charges.
Legal Analyst Steven Clark says this case has been conducted in an unusual way thus far.
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Victims usually only speak at sentencing and not before as they have done multiple times as this case has proceeded.
Clark says this is not a guilt or innocence case and the judge wants to hear all voices.
"She wants to hear from both sides and, especially from the victims, how this impacted their lives, before she commits to a sentence for Ms. O'Connor," Clark said.
The next public court date, where we will learn that sentence and if there's a change in plea, will be on May 16.
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