Scott Marks 3:01 p.m., May 20
An East County woman who was bombed by her husband confronted the man in court today before he was sentenced to life in prison for his unsuccessful attempts to kill her.
Connie Hoagland, 52, startled onlookers by claiming that her husband had tried to kill her even before he created the two pipe bombs which were discovered by investigators in September 2010. Connie was looking at Lawrence Gerald Hoagland, 50, when she said, “I can say with confidence that you tried to poison me;” she said it was in the morning coffee he brought her each day. Connie described debilitating weakness that sent her back to bed every morning, and “I have not experienced any of these symptoms since you have been out of my life.”
Connie Hoagland also said to her now ex-husband: “While I slept, you took a pillow and brought it over my face and held it down as I screamed and fought for my life. You tried to kill me.” She said she couldn’t believe her husband of 25 years was trying to kill her, at the time.
The couple’s three children also spoke in court today, and none would address the man as Dad. The middle child, a 22-year-old daughter said, “Larry is no longer my father,” and the eldest daughter, 25, told him, “I exercise my rights… to wash my hands of you.”
Larry Hoagland’s 16-year-old son said, “Larry, you disgust me” and “You do not have the right to consider us your family anymore” and “We are better off without you now.”
A jury last month found the defendant guilty of premeditated attempted murder and exploding a destructive device and great bodily injury. Larry’s wife Connie was severely injured when a pipe bomb which had been placed under the steering column of her truck exploded, after she turned the key in the ignition, September 23, 2010.
Connie Hoagland testified during her ex-husband’s trial, and repeated again today, “God saved me from certain death.”
Larry Hoagland spoke to the judge before sentence was pronounced, saying “I vehemently insist I am an innocent man” and “I contribute and am an asset to our society.” Judge Herbert Exarhos gave the convicted man 13 years plus Life, the sentences to run consecutively.
Prosecutor Kurt Mechals said Larry Hoagland will be eligible for parole after he has served 20 years.