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SLO County Roundup

San Luis Obispo

Two South County brothers face six-year prison sentences after entering no-contest pleas Wednesday to charges in an alleged gang-related assault in Oceano, according to the District Attorney’s Office.

Jessie Edward Garay, 20, and Robert Joseph Garay, 18, entered pleas to assault with great bodily injury in the alleged attack on a teenage victim Jan. 3 in a local park.

The Garays — alleged members of the Oceano 13 gang — also pleaded no contest to “enhancements” of acting in the benefit or at the direction of a street gang and inflicting great bodily injury, which are expected to increase the penalty for their alleged crime.

A no-contest plea results in a conviction without an admission of guilt, but its punitive effect is similar to that of a guilty plea.

The Garays are scheduled to be sentenced May 12.

— Nick Wilson

Cal Poly

The California Supreme Court has delayed its decision about whether to review the case against two Cal Poly fraternity brothers in the alleged hazing death of freshman Carson Starkey, according to lawyers involved with the case.

The Supreme Court will consider whether to review the legality of the charges by May 18 after a time extension was made Friday to delay the decision, lawyers said.

The deadline for the court’s decision on Haithem Ibrahim’s case was Friday, and Zacary Ellis has a deadline of Friday, April 23, said Rick Conway, Ellis’ Hanford-based attorney.

Conway said the postponement was made for Ibrahim and he expects the same for his client before the end of the week.

Ibrahim and Ellis have pleaded not guilty to felony hazing causing death and misdemeanor furnishing alcohol to a minor causing death.

The two men claim they weren’t responsible for Starkey’s actions and that the 18-year-old made the choice to consume the alcohol that led to his death that night.

— Nick Wilson

Los Osos

Local resident Holly Navolt, 19, is in need of a double lung transplant after she was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis.

Los Osos residents are volunteering to assist with fundraising activities, where they hope to raise $100,000 for the procedure.

More volunteers are needed. For more information, contact Community Coordinator Amber Pinon at 489-9574.

Donations can be made in person at any Chase Bank branch location using account number 2954106734 or mailed to the Children’s Organ Transplant Association, 2501 West COTA Drive, Bloomington, Indiana, 47403.

Checks or money orders can be made to COTA, with “In honor of Holly N.” in the memo line.

— Amy Dempsey

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