Later, gangster

Thug guilty of killing a dad while young son tried pulling him away

Rene Sanchez, now 23 years old, was found guilty of shooting a man to death at a Halloween party in Escondido seven years ago; the verdict was announced late yesterday, November 19.

Rene Sanchez

Rene Sanchez

Sanchez was 16 years old and reportedly a member of the Diablos street gang when the hostess of a party demanded that he and others in his uninvited group leave her backyard, in October of 2007.

Adults had been playing a card game at a table on the back patio, with little children running around in costumes, when the group of gangster-looking youths invaded the backyard.

“You can just tell the kind of people they are, the way they dress, the way they carry themselves,” one witness told the jury during trial. “They just walk in with an attitude: they are just all hard.” (Prosecutor Geoff Allard asked that media not identify civilian witnesses nor the victims.)

The pretty Latina testified, “I mean, who just walks in on a party where you don’t know anyone, just to mooch off the drinks. I mean, who does that? I asked my husband to leave, to just go, ’cause I felt like there would be problems.” This witness said her husband declined to leave because he did not want to abandon the hosts in case there was trouble.

There was trouble, and the woman’s husband was shot to death. Their small son was tugging at his father’s leg, asking his dad to come away, and he witnessed the fatal shooting.

Another party guest was shot in the back; that man survived to testify. A third victim, the hostess, survived her stab wounds and also testified.

“This case reeks of malice,” prosecutor Geoff Allard told the jury. “This gang worships violence. They call it respect.” Allard, who is a gang specialist, told the jury that when Sanchez arrived at the party with a gun in his pocket, the shooting was, ”sadly, inevitable.”

“He took a life just so he could up his status in the gang,” the prosecutor said.

The shooter fled the scene and was apprehended by Mexican authorities in September of 2013, then turned over to Escondido police. Sanchez is said to be an American citizen.

A jury of 7 men and 5 women heard trial for almost two weeks and deliberated about two days before declaring their verdicts.

Sanchez was found guilty of first-degree murder in the death of one man, and guilty of the attempted murder of the other man. The jury decided that a different gang member stabbed the female hostess; Sanchez was acquitted on that charge.

Sentencing is set for January 15 in San Diego’s North County Superior Courthouse.

Share / Tools

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google+
  • AddThis
  • Email

More from SDReader

Comments

Sad, tragic and pointless.

When I first went to work at a maximum security prison in Connecticut I used to see eighty plus year old men locking up in their cells and wonder what they had done. Something like this I now imagine.

But for this kid in the California penal system? I don't see eighty in his future. Sad, tragic and pointless for everyone. Is it just? Well sure, but a tragic loss of two lives, one an innocent father dead, one a living dead man.

Valentine - what haven't you seen and done? Hold on, it gets better luv.

He looks young and pretty enough to become someone's wife. All gangbangers should be sentenced to LWOP. Unless and until we treat gangbangers like the urban terrorists they are we will accomplish nothing. Assuming this clown survives his "prison marriage" he will be out in 7 - 10 years and will once again be a banger.

"La Vida loca", Escondido style. Don't you just love that city?

I really doubt with a first-degree murder conviction and an attempted murder count, too, that he'll be out in a decade or less. In this case, life may mean "life."

I have sat here and tried to imagine what could be possibly be going on in these young peoples minds that would lead them to commit such a violent senseless act.

This is 2014, technologically we have advanced - however when it comes to compassion and love of neighbor - I believe we have regressed.

While I believe in taking responsibility, have you ever wondered 'what role has nurture, or lack thereof contributed to the emptiness of such individuals'.

Sending prayers to the victims and their families.

Log in to comment

Skip Ad
Close

Let’s Be Friends

Subscribe for local event alerts, concerts tickets, promotions and more from the San Diego Reader