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Anniversary of shooting; still no trial

Three accused of murdering man last Halloween have not been tried

Posted: October 31, 2012 2:00 a.m.
Updated: October 31, 2012 2:00 a.m.

It’s been one year since a man was shot in front of his son while coming to the aid of a robbery victim in Canyon Country — and nearly a year that his accused killers have remained in jail awaiting trial.

Last Halloween, Alejandro “Alex” Torrez, 31, was walking through a shopping plaza with his 7-year-old son, getting an early jump on trick-or-treating, when he saw a man being robbed during the sale of a Nintendo DS game system.

A shot rang out between the shops and offices lining the plaza, and Torres was dead.

His son, dressed in a black costume with a cape, saw his father shot and killed.

Within a couple of days, detectives with the Homicide Bureau of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department arrested three young men.

Today they remain in three separate jails, reunited each time they appear in court.

Each of the three accused — handcuffed and wearing bright orange jail uniforms — has filed into a wire cage at the side of the San Fernando Superior Court and sat silently while their respective attorneys entered the pleas for them.

Each entered a plea of not guilty.

That was in January.

In July, they were ordered to stand trial and were arraigned a month later on several felony charges including murder, attempted murder, robbery and conspiracy to commit robbery.

They are scheduled to appear for another pre-trial conference next week in San Fernando Superior Court.

All three were juveniles when they were arrested. All became adults in jail.

Diamonte Jerome McGhee, who turned 18 in January, identified by prosecutors as the trigger-puller in the fatal shooting, is being held at the the North County Correctional Facility in Castaic.

Eric Michael Edwards turned 18 in April and is in custody at Men’s Central Jail on Bauchet Street in Los Angeles.

Branden Trevaughn Higgs, at Sylmar Juvenile Hall, celebrated his 18th birthday in August.



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