Former California gubernatorial candidate sentenced 25 years to life

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Friday, January 8, 2016
Governor candidate's partial victory could still mean life in prison
The one-time candidate for California governor, Tye Champ, won a partial victory in court Tuesday.

FRESNO, Calif. -- Tye "Glenn" Champ was sentenced to 25 years to life for being an ex-felon in possession of a firearm -- his third strike.

Champ, who ran for California Governor in 2014, was on trial after he allegedly shot his neighbor in the stomach. Champ claimed it was self-defense. He was also accused of shooting and killing his neighbor's horse, but it was later found that the horse was already dead before the incident.

In September, a jury found Champ not guilty on one count of being an ex-felon in possession of a firearm. They could not reach a unanimous decision on the more serious charge of attempted murder.

The firearm charge usually carries a sentence of no more than 3 years, but since this was Champ's third strike, the judge ultimately sentenced him to 25-years to life.

Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims says the one-time gubernatorial candidate has an extensive criminal history dating back nearly 30 years. In 1998, Action News cameras were rolling when Champ pleaded guilty to manslaughter.

"The voluntary manslaughter charge resulted from a case in the Prather area where Champ ran over a competitor trash collector with his garbage truck," said Mims.

Champ received more than 76,000 votes in the 2014 June primary election.


Tye Champ campaign video (YouTube)