Oceano shooting suspect chose targets randomly, investigator says

Patrick S. Pemberton (San Luis Obispo Tribune) | August 28, 2012

Angered by an encounter he’d had with Nipomo gang members, an alleged former Los Angeles gang member randomly targeted a group of Oceano teens standing near a street corner and began shooting, a detective with the District Attorney’s Office testified Monday.

During the incident last November, 17-year-old Gabriel Salgado — an Oceano resident with no gang ties — was killed. A 14-year-old boy standing near him was shot in the leg.

Armando Yepez of Santa Maria appeared in court for a preliminary hearing Monday as several members of Salgado’s family — many wearing shirts bearing his image — sat quietly in the courtroom audience.

Yepez, who was 21 when he was arrested in May, faces charges of murder, attempted murder and committing a crime for the benefit of a street gang.

The rare drive-by shooting shocked members of the community. The alleged shooter’s identity was unknown to Oceano residents until Yepez was arrested during a Highway 101 traffic stop six months after the incident.

While it’s still not known how Yepez was identified, testimony Monday revealed that a key witness for the prosecution is a friend of the defendant’s — identified by authorities only as “H.R.” — who said he was with Yepez during the shooting.

Read more at: http://www.sanluisobispo.com/2012/08/27/2201432/oceano-shooting-suspect-chose.html

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