Bruce Young kidnapped 3 month old Brandon Huff in 1982
(Woodland, CA) - December 23, 2016 - District Attorney Jeff Reisig announced today that Bruce Young will remain in prison for kidnapping Woodland baby Brandon Huff who was three months old at the time. Young, now 56, was denied parole for the 18th time yesterday following a four-hour hearing at the California Heath Care Facility, a state prison in Stockton, where he is serving a life sentence for the crime which occurred on August 9, 1982.
At the time of the crime, Young was a heroin addict who was in debt to his drug dealer Salvador Sanchez. At the hearing, Young said he owed Sanchez around $3,000. Sanchez told Young that he would forgive the debt if he helped Sanchez kidnap the Huff baby and ask for ransom from the Huff family. Two juvenile girls assisted with the crime.
Young said his role was to confront a caretaker at the Huff family ranch, Jose Carrillo, whom Young struck several times with the butt of a shotgun, fracturing his ribs. The others kidnapped the infant boy and fled in a van. Sanchez later phoned in a ransom demand. Later as the Sanchez drove the van on Interstate 5, Yolo County sheriff's deputies and the CHP pursued them at high speeds. During the chase, at the urging of Sanchez, one of the girls dangled the baby out of the van window. Young later turned himself in to authorities after seeing the dramatic chase unfold on television.
Young later pleaded guilty to charges including kidnapping for ransom and received a prison sentence of seven years to life. Sanchez, 22, hanged himself in the Yolo County Jail on the eve of his trial, while the girls, who were 13 and 15, served time at the California Youth Authority until their 21st birthdays.
While in prison, Young has received dozens of write-ups for offenses both serious and administrative in nature. He has also admitted to using heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine over the years, continuing a history of drug abuse that began when he was about 13 years old. For the past year, Young has been discipline and drug free in making efforts to be released from prison at some time in the future. He is also a masterful artist selling his paintings and donating them to charities.
Young’s release was opposed by the Yolo County Sheriff's Department and the Yolo County District Attorney's Office, which cited a September, 2016, psychological evaluation that deemed Young at moderate risk for violence and recidivism. Young received numerous letters to the parole board asking for Young's release, including family members, neighbors and teachers from elementary school.
At the end of the hearing, Young tearfully stated “I knew I had only a snowball’s chance to get a date but I wanted to face you guys. I’m a good person.” In denying parole, Commissioner Randolf Grounds stated that Young “posed an unreasonable risk of public safety and was not eligible for parole at this time.” The Commissioner continued by stating that Young “has shown signs of remorse and he didn’t have any serious rules violations in the last year.”
Brandon Huff, now 34, is an Iraq War veteran who lost his left leg after an IED exploded in Mosul in 2005. Brandon’s mother, Marcia Hammill of Woodland, attended the hearing, as did Chief Deputy District Attorney, Jonathan Raven. Young’s next hearing date is scheduled for 2021, but he can request the Board of Parole Hearings to advance the date of his next hearing.