Two to stand trial for killing of bystander in Gaslamp - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Two to stand trial for killing of bystander in Gaslamp

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SAN DIEGO (CNS) - Two reputed gang members accused of firing shots that killed a 21-year-old bystander in the Gaslamp Quarter two years ago must stand trial on murder and other charges, a judge ruled Monday.

The alleged shooter, Dontaye Craig, and co-defendant Rashad Scott were also ordered by Judge John Einhorn at the end of a two-day preliminary hearing to stand trial on attempted murder and assault with a firearm charges.

Two other reputed gang members, Frederick Roberson and Marlon Johnson, were indicted by a county grand jury on the same charges in connection with the May 24, 2009, shooting that claimed the life of Lakiesha Mason.

All four defendants face 107 years in life in prison if convicted, Deputy District Attorney James Simmons said.

A witness, identified in court only as "John Doe," testified that the defendants came across rival gang members and began to fight after words were exchanged, and at some point Craig fired his gun.

Mason was struck above the left eyebrow.

Simmons said the intended target was shot three or four times but has fully recovered.

"(Craig) was intending to kill him, but he did kill her," Simmons alleged.

What he called "transferred intent" will support a murder charge, the prosecutor said.

A third person was hit in the back and still carries the bullet, he said. That man, who was running from the scene, nor Mason, had anything to do with the gang brawl that prompted the shooting, Simmons said.

No one was arrested in the case until last year.

San Diego police Detective Stephen McDonald testified that a suspect he was interrogating in a domestic violence case offered to act as a "confidential informant" because Craig admitted to him that he fired the shots.

The suspect said Craig told him "it was an accident, I was trying to shoot the (rival) dude," according to McDonald, who said he turned the information over to detectives handling the murder case.

Craig's lawyer, John Mitchell, declined comment after the hearing. Scott's attorney, Timothy Chandler, said his client wasn't involved.

The defendants were ordered to return to court Oct. 18 to receive a trial date.

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