A jury acquitted an Oceanside man accused of gunning down two of his neighbors two years ago, killing one and wounding another, Tuesday.
The jury cleared the defendant of first-degree murder and attempted murder counts but deadlocked on lesser charges of second-degree murder and voluntary manslaughter.
A status conference was scheduled for Aug. 7, at which time prosecutors will declare whether they will go forward with a second trial on the deadlocked counts.
Diego Arturo Martinez, 22, is charged in the Aug. 30, 2012, shooting death of Robert Robbins, 47. Robbins’ girlfriend, Lisa Badgett, also was wounded.
As she drove away, Badgett said she saw Martinez, their neighbor, holding a gun outside her truck window.
Badgett testified that she remembered Robbins yelling, “Go, go, go!” but said she couldn’t drive because she had been shot in the arm.
Martinez was arrested about nine hours after the shootings.
Oceanside police Sgt. Torino Valdovinos said the defendant told him that he thought Robbins was a troublemaker. Martinez said he and Robbins had argued earlier that night and the defendant had thrown the victim out of his home, the sergeant testified.
Later, Martinez spotted Robbins leaving with Badgett, Valdovinos testified. Robbins started to approach the defendant but got back into his girlfriend’s truck when Martinez flashed a gun, the sergeant said.
Valdovinos testified that Martinez told him that he stood at the driver’s side window and the gun went off, wounding Badgett. Martinez said Robbins pointed something at him and he shot the victim, according to the sergeant.
– City News Service
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