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Medical examiner: Teen killed with 3 others in Palm Springs is pregnant

A 17-year-old girl who died along with three others in what prosecutors called a mass shooting by a Cathedral City man nearly three years ago in Palm Springs was pregnant when she was arrested. killed, a medical examiner testified today.

Jose Larin-Garcia, 22, was charged with four counts of murder stemming from a February 2019 shooting in which the victims, aged 17 to 25, were found dead at two separate locations. separate.

Jose Larin Garcia and his defense team in court on November 30, 2021. Photo: KESQ

He also faces a special circumstances charge of having committed multiple murders, opening him up to a death sentence if convicted.

According to prosecutors, three of the victims were found inside the crashed Toyota Corolla at Sunny Dunes and El Placer streets around 11:40 p.m. on February 3, 2019, while a fourth was found. then 30 minutes lying on the street about half way. mile.

Killed inside the vehicle were Jacob Montgomery, 19, Juan Duarte Raya, 18, and Yuliana Garcia, 17, who were driving.

In prosecutors’ testimony at the Larson Justice Center on Wednesday, medical examiner Dr. Allison Hunt reviewed the autopsies of the victims, and said Garcia was found to be five years pregnant. up to 6 weeks at the time of her death.

The testimony was the first public revelation that the teen was pregnant.

In the opening statements on MondayDeputy District Attorney Samantha Paixao said Larin-Garcia was in the vehicle with the three victims, and they were at the location so Montgomery could conduct a drug sale.

Paixao told jurors that the shell found in the vehicle was the same cartridge found later in the defendant’s vehicle, although the gun has yet to be located. According to Paixao, Larin-Garcia’s coat and shoes were also stained with the victim’s blood, which indicates that he was in the car with them at the time of the murder, according to Paixao.

Full Monday Opening Statement:

Larin-Garcia’s attorney, John Dolan, countered in his opening statement Tuesday that “nothing to suggest that Garcia committed this crime. ”

According to Dolan, only the bloodstain on his clothes links the defendant to the crime scene, and there is no search for the alleged gun the prosecution alleges he used in the crime, ammo shells only.

Dolan adds that a “slender person leaving the crime scene” has not been properly investigated and may well have committed a crime.

Dolan said the lack of evidence and negligence in the overall investigation left little evidence that Larin-Garcia committed a crime, and that it was “wrongful to try to use scant evidence to convict the accused.” and outrageous.”

Full Tuesday’s Opening Report:

During the defendant’s preliminary hearing, Deputy Attorney General Scot Clark said Larin-Garcia was in the back seat of a Corolla when he fatally shot Carlos Campos Rivera, 25, on Canon Drive south of Theresa Drive in when the victim is standing next to or leaning over. inside the car.

The motive for the shooting remains unclear, but Clark at the time speculated that it might have been drug-related.

After that shooting, Clark said, the Toyota driver sped away, but Larin-Garcia shot dead three others in the vehicle, then jumped from the moving vehicle before it crashed into a moving Jeep. parked at Sunny Dunes and El Placer streets.

Clark says that Larin-Garcia killed the trio because they witnessed Rivera’s murder.

Larin-Garcia “sets the scene in methodically killing three only people on Earth who can describe what happened in front of (Rivera)’s apartment building,” the prosecutor said. at that time.

Police testified during the hearing that Larin-Garcia was found by first responders hiding under a pickup just a few blocks from the scene of the crash, and taken to Regional Medical Center. Desert area to treat various scratches.

Prosecutors said Larin-Garcia then fled the hospital, where police were questioning him, and ran to a friend’s home.

Palm Springs Police detective Steve Grissom testified during the hearing that the friend went to Larin-Garcia’s mother’s home to get new clothes for the suspect and his identification from a purse. Later in the day, the friend also bought tapes for Larin-Garcia, along with a ticket for a Greyhound bus to Florida under the name “Joseph Browning,” Grissom testified.

At some point that day, Larin-Garcia shaved his head to change his appearance, then his friend drove him to the Greyhound station in Indio, where he was arrested, Grissom testified.

Larin-Garcia has no recorded felony convictions in Riverside County. He remains in custody without bail at the John Benoit Detention Center in Indio.

https://kesq.com/news/crime/2021/12/01/medical-examiner-teen-killed-with-3-others-in-palm-springs-was-pregnant/ Medical examiner: Teen killed with 3 others in Palm Springs is pregnant

DUSTIN JONES

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