Two Men Convicted of Attempted Murder of Chula Vista Police Officer and Another Man in Gang Related Shooting; Both Face Life Terms
Scoop San Diego | July 25, 2012
San Diego County District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis announced that two South Bay men were convicted by a San Diego Superior Court Jury late Tuesday of attempted murder and other charges for their role in trying to kill a Chula Vista Police Officer and another man in a gang-related shooting.
James Martinez, 21, and Sean O’Neill, 23, were convicted of attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon, use of a firearm, personal infliction of great bodily injury, threatening an officer with force and driving with a willful and wanton disregard for safety while fleeing an officer. The jury also found that the crimes were committed for the benefit of a criminal street gang.
“Our office comes down hard on gang violence and on attacks on our police officers,” DA Bonnie Dumanis said. “This verdict shows that the community has no tolerance for these types of crimes either. Deputy District Attorney David Bost in our gangs division did an excellent job presenting the evidence to the jury.”
On April 23, Martinez, O’Neill and an unidentified companion approached and shot a man standing outside Wild Wooly’s bar. Martinez and O’Neill, who are both documented gang members, issued a gang challenge and shot the man twice in the chest, once in the leg and once in the side. Immediately after the shooting, Chula Vista Police Officer Ricardo Cruz arrived on the scene and began a pursuit of a vehicle driven by Martinez. The high-speed pursuit ended in a cul de sac in Chula Vista. Officer Cruz got out of his patrol car and ordered Martinez and O’Neill out of their car. Instead of complying, Martinez gunned the engine and drove directly at Cruz crushing him between the door of his patrol car and the body of the car.
Tags: Chula Vista, James Martinez, Officer Ricardo Cruz, Sean O’Neill