Pearl Fernandez, the mother who was convicted for torturing and murdering her 8-year-old son Gabriel Fernandez, has filed a petition for a resentencing.
Per Fox Los Angeles, Fernandez is seeking to have her murder conviction vacated. Her legal team is citing changes to Penal Codes 188 and 189 that came into effect in 2019, which alters how malice is imputed. “Malice is implied when no considerable provocation appears, or when the circumstances attending the killing show an abandoned and malignant heart,” the changes state.
Jonathan Hatami, a prosecutor who worked on the case, said, "The policies and directives from my office and these new laws created by the legislature are emboldening murderers of children to apply to be resentenced. Families now have to relive the horror."
Her petition for a resentencing comes just over a year after Netflix released a six-part docuseries on the case titled The Trials of Gabriel Fernandez.
Fernandez and her boyfriend Isauro Agguire were sentenced for torturing and abusing 8-year-old Gabriel over the course of several months in 2013. They were both charged and convicted of first-degree murder with special circumstances of torture. Pearl was sentenced to life imprisonment with no opportunity for parole, while Aguirre was sentenced to death and remains on death row to this day.
"You want to say that the conduct was animalistic, but that would be wrong because even animals know how to take care of their young. ... It's beyond animalistic," said the judge who sentenced the two, NBC Los Angeles noted.