The defense motion to eliminate the prior strikes against Marcus Green was denied earlier this month.

Green, 51, of Thermal, was the driver of a car that went over the side of Highway 74 in May 2016 and resulted in the death of a 5-month-old child. The Riverside County District Attorney’s office has filed two felony charges — murder and willful child cruelty — as well as gross domestic violence.

In December, his attorney filed a motion to eliminate his prior strikes (felonies) for this case. 

David Greenberg, Green’s attorney, argued that the judge has the discretion to dismiss prior strikes. Since Green has been released from state prison in 2012 he has had his parole discharged.

He also argued that Green is a different person than the one who committed these acts more than 20 years ago.

The DA’s office opposed the motion and said, “And while there will sometimes be certain factors that weigh in a defendant’s favor, a trial court must always be mindful that society, represented by the People, has a legitimate interest in the ‘the fair prosecution of crimes properly alleged.’”

Riverside County Superior Judge Dean Benjamini denied the motion at a Jan. 11 hearing.

Another preliminary hearing is scheduled for March 14.

Green’s bail was set at  $1.86 million. His appeal for a bail reduction was denied at a June hearing.