Save justice for Nick Ly - Stop release of convicted felony murderer Theodore Douglas Cole

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Case Overview

Family, friends and good people of the world, we urgently need your help to save justice for Nick Ly -- beloved youngest brother, son, cousin, uncle and friend. Please take a moment to SIGN and SHARE this petition to oppose clemency for convicted felony murderer Theodore Douglas Cole. He should be kept in prison to complete his full sentence of life without parole. We are concerned about crime victims rights and safety of our community if he is reinserted back into society. Because of time critical deadline, your signature is greatly needed to stand strong for crime victims rights by August 5, 2018 before the clemency application is reviewed by CA Governor Jerry Brown.

Seventeen years after Nick's murderers were convicted of felony murder with special circumstances and condemned to life without parole, the driver Cole responsible for Nick's death has filed a petition for clemency for commutation of sentence (early release) by Governor Jerry Brown. We believe the wheels of justice had turned so that Nick could rest in peace and should not be undone. Let justice be fully served!

As Mother’s Day weekend approached, Nick was planning a special homecooked gathering for his mother in Fresno, CA. Tragically, he was never able to celebrate with his family. On Friday, May 11, 2001, Nick was killed during an attempted robbery with a gunshot to the heart while working on a food truck operated by his fiancee’s family in Sacramento, CA. Heartbreakingly, Nick died in the emergency room before any immediate family could rush through the three hour drive. His mother, father, brother and sister were beyond devastated that they could not reach him in time. He died two months before his 24th birthday. Nick is survived by his parents, three older siblings, his fiancée, nephews, nieces who never had a chance to meet him, cousin/uncle best friends, extended relatives and friends who miss him dearly to this day.

Successful Reward Campaign

With very little evidence and what appeared to be a hopeless case, Nick’s family launched a crime witness reward campaign. Together with local communities, news media, authorities, carwash donation rallies in Sacramento and Fresno, and a direct contribution from the Carole Sund-Carrington Memorial Reward Foundation, Nick’s family was able to successfully raise $10,000 reward for any information leading to the arrest and conviction of his killers. Several people drove from an hour away to donate without asking for a car wash and said, “We saw you on the news and wanted you to know we support you. The same thing happened to my nephew and we hope you find who did this.” The case broke one week after the reward was posted.

On August 7, 2001, within three months after Nick’s death, two men Jeremy Dut Chiu and Theodore Douglas Cole were arraigned for his murder. Two of Cole’s relatives came forward and aided authorities with information for their arrest. Cole’s cousin Venus had given them the idea of robbing the lunch catering truck for drug money at her place of employment. She had violated her probation on shoplifting charges and received immunity for her cooperation. Chiu was already in custody for committing another robbery at Del Taco shortly after killing Nick and boasted of being a “legend” for his crime.

Trials & Convictions

In May 2002, after a series of jury trials in Sacramento County, Chiu the shooter was convicted of felony murder with special circumstances and condemned to two consecutive life sentences without parole plus sixteen years without parole for the robbery death of Nick and separate robbery of Del Taco. During Chiu’s sentencing, he flippantly told the presiding judge, “If this is justice, you and Sacramento County can kiss my ass.”

Cole refused a plea bargain. He was tried and convicted as the driver in the felony murder of Nick. During Cole’s trial, Chiu testified under immunity and admitted to shooting Nick. On December 13, 2002, Cole was sentenced to life without parole for felony murder with special circumstances. He drove the get away vehicle and is responsible for premeditated robbery with use of a deadly weapon that ultimately took Nick’s entire life away. At no point did Cole ever show any remorse.

Hope & Lifetime Grieving

On April 26, 2003, Nick’s oldest sister, his fiancée and her daughter who Nick helped raise, joined in marching in the Vigil of Hope with the Sund-Carrington Memorial Reward Foundation along with Laci Petersen and Chandra Levy’s families in Modesto, CA. On stage, Nick’s sister gave thanks to supporters and offered hope for other victim’s families.

On Nick’s birthday, this past July 14th, his family visited his grave. Over the years, Nick's family and friends have struggled with his senseless death. A couple days later, Nick’s father received the call from Sacramento County District Attorney notifying the family of Cole’s petition for clemency.

Crime Victims Rights Action Needed

Unfortunately, there isn't much time to fight for justice. If you do not want this thieving murderer to be released into free society, please sign this clemency opposition petition to let Governor Jerry Brown know you do not want to see Cole released early. Since returning to office in 2011, Governor Jerry Brown has granted approximately 1,200 executive clemency including pardons and commutations -- more so than any other California Governor including his father. 

Nick was never given a second chance at life. He was irrevocably robbed of being a son, brother, uncle, father, playing his favorite sport soccer, traveling and so much more. No family should ever have to resuffer the devastating heartache, agony and loss of a murdered loved one because of early release of their perpetrators. Convicted felony murderer Theodore Douglas Cole should stay behind bars for life. Bless you for joining us in fighting for crime victims rights.

Thank you,
The Nick Ly Family

Facebook @nicklywashere

Today: Nick Ly is counting on you

Nick Ly Family needs your help with “Governor Jerry Brown: Save justice for Nick Ly; Stop release of convicted felony murderer Theodore Douglas Cole”. Join Nick Ly and 2,842 supporters today.