A suspect is taken into custody following a fatal shooting in a Canyon Country parking lot. Photo by Elliott Cohen for SCVNews.com
The alleged triggerman in Monday’s shooting at a strip mall in Canyon Country is a repeat offender, according to a complaint filed by the District Attorney.
Diamonte Jerome McGhee, Branden Trevaughn Higgs and Eric Michael Edwards, all 17, will be tried as adults.
Alex Sanchez was killed and Ricardo Sandoval was injured when the three suspects attempted to rob Sandoval and Sanchez, acting as a Good Samaritan, stepped in. According to the complaint, McGhee produced a handgun and shot Sanchez in the chest and when Sandoval attempted to run away, McGhee shot him in the leg.
McGhee has a prior robbery conviction from March 2010.
All three defendants face five felony counts of murder, attempted murder, murder with special circumstances, conspiracy to commit a crime and second degree robbery.
While the murder charge comes with a possibility of the death penalty, District Attorney spokesperson Jane Robison said the court will not seek the death penalty for anyone under 18, even though they are being tried as adults.
“With the special circumstances, they could go away for life,” she explained.
The more serious charges are leveled at McGhee, for using the gun. He is facing 25 years to life without parole. If convicted, all three face incarceration in state prison.
McGhee is being held in lieu of $41 million bail; Higgs and Edwards are being held in lieu of $31 million each. The three are set to be arraigned Nov. 17.