For Immediate Release
MURDERER SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON WITHOUT PAROLE
SANTA ROSA, CA | November 23, 2022
Defendant Robert Lee Randolph, 36 years old of Philadelphia, was sentenced today by the Honorable Christopher Honigsberg for two counts of first-degree murder and one count of attempted first-degree murder. The Defendant was convicted after jury trial of all charges, special allegations and enhancements, which included use of a firearm causing great bodily injury or death.
The charges occurred on October 15, 2016, at a home off Highway 116 in Sebastopol. The Defendant knew one of his victims, Jessie Mariana, as he and Mariana had engaged in the brokering and sale of marijuana on multiple occasions. The Defendant and his girlfriend traveled from Philadelphia to California once again in October 2016 to purchase marijuana, but the evidence later revealed that Defendant’s relationship with Mr. Mariana had soured over time. The Defendant, his girlfriend, and Mr. Mariana met with the second victim, Nathan Proto, at Proto’s home. Mr. Proto was a marijuana grower and provided the marijuana for the deal. Accompanying Mr. Mariana was Geena Gauthier, the only surviving victim. After the marijuana deal was concluded and all parties were inside a garage-type structure, the Defendant opened fire. The defendant killed Jessie Mariana, Nathan Proto, and attempted to kill Geena Gauthier. Ms. Gauthier miraculously survived being shot three times in the head and face and alerted authorities by calling 911. Defendant and his girlfriend fled the scene and were on the run across multiple states for more than two years The pair were finally located and arrested in Texas in December 2018.
The Defendant was sentenced to two life terms without parole the for first degree premeditated murders of Jessie Mariana and Nathan Proto. The Defendant was also sentenced to a life term for attempting to murder Geena Gauthier. The total sentence imposed, including sentences for gun enhancements and great bodily injury is 82 years to life, plus two life terms without parole.
The surviving victim and the families of Jessie Mariana and Nathan Proto were present in Court, either personally or via zoom. Jessie Mariana’s sister wrote in her impact statement: “My brother was my best friend, my confidant, and my safety. Losing my brother has left an immeasurable amount of grief, pain, and sorrow within me for the last six years. “
Geena Gauthier, the surviving victim, wrote in her victim impact statement, “It will never not haunt me that I was made to witness such needless violence. No one needs to die over cannabis. Ever. Every time I look in the mirror, I am humbled by the fact that despite my injuries I got to keep my life. It fills me with grief to understand the implications of surviving the violence that I did. To know that in the grand scheme of things, my injuries were the least severe of anyone involved.”
Nathan Proto’s father stated, “I have come to understand that I will never be free of the void created by Nathan’s cruel and needless death until I die. In a way I have been sentenced to live with this profound loss for the rest of my life.”
The Defendant refused to come to court and had no comment.
The case was prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney Juliette Hyde, assisted by District Attorney Investigator David Kahl. Sgt. Jeffrey Toney and Sgt. Ryan Mitchell of the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Department headed the investigation.
Media Spokesperson, Chief Deputy District Attorney Brian Staebell
Media Coordinator, Carrie Trevena