California judge sentences killer, then performs his wedding

The family of a murder victim has demanded an apology from a San Diego Superior Court judge who performed a wedding for the killer minutes after sentencing him to a lifetime in prison.

In a letter to Judge Patricia Cookson, the family of Kevin Santos asked her to explain her action and warned they will file a complaint with the California Commission on Judicial Performance, which investigates judicial misconduct, U-T San Diego reported Monday.

Performing the ceremony showed partiality to the killer's interests and "displayed insensitivity to the victim's family," the letter said.

Cookson did not respond to the newspaper's request for comment.

The judge performed the wedding for Danne Desbrow and the mother of his son on Sept. 17 shortly after sentencing him to a maximum term for killing Santos in 2003. The bride said she and Desbrow rekindled their romance while he was in jail, and that during trial she asked Cookson if she could marry the couple at sentencing.

Destiny Desbrow said Cookson agreed, and even gave the newlyweds two slices of cake that the judge had baked after vows were exchanged.

Santos' relatives said they were rushed out of the courtroom after the sentencing, and were insulted when they later learned about the ceremony.

"It was just wrong," Santos' younger sister, April Santos, said. "That day was not for him. That was our day, that was Kevin's day."