Redding man gets 25-to-life for father's murder

Oct 20, 2015 6:22 PM by News Staff

A Redding man convicted of murdering his father and then chopping up his body with a hatchet will likely spend the rest of his life behind bars.

James Jonathan Bland, 20, accepted a plea deal last month, and was formally sentenced to 25-years-to-life in prison Tuesday.

Prosecutors say as a condition of Bland’s plea deal, his conviction was dropped to second degree murder because he recently helped investigators recover what was left of his father’s remains.

According to the Shasta County Sheriff’s Office, Steven Bland's relatives reported him missing on June 23, 2014. James allegedly told the relatives he dropped Steven at the Greyhound station in Redding on April 3, 2014, and claimed that Steven told him, if no one hears from me for two months, split my belongings amongst yourselves.

Detectives began an investigation and found no evidence that Steven Bland had ever left the Redding area.

In the weeks that followed, a friend of James Bland came forward and told detectives that James had admitted to killing a man over a marijuana deal and then dismembering the body. The friend reportedly said James was trying to burn the body, but had eventually moved the remains to a wooded area in eastern Shasta County.

On July 14, 2014 investigators found that James Bland had been using his father’s credit card, and they arrested him for grand theft. The next day, a search warrant was served at the home shared by James and his father, and according to the sheriff’s office, a human hand and several burnt bones were found on the property.

The rest of Steven Bland’s remains were found buried in the Oak Run area.


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