VISTA (CNS) - Four gang members accused in the shooting deaths of a teenage couple in an Oceanside park were ordered Monday to stand trial on murder and other charges.
AL'C Robert Bejaran and Justin Gibson, both 19, and Kenneth Hamilton, 34, are charged with two counts of murder in the May 3 shooting deaths of Sandra Salgado, 14, and Fernando Solano, 16, at Libby Lake Park.
The defendants also face allegations that the murder was carried out for the benefit of a street gang.
Bejaran, the alleged gunman, is also charged with a special circumstance allegation of multiple murders, making him eligible for the death penalty or life in prison without parole should he be convicted.
A decision on which punishment Bejaran will face if he's found guilty will be made later.
A fourth defendant, Tyrone Blackmon, 29, is charged with being an accessory after the fact and faces seven years in prison if convicted. Gibson and Hamilton face 51 years to life in prison if convicted.
After a four-day preliminary hearing, Vista Judge Harry Elias ruled that enough evidence was presented for the defendants to stand trial. A Superior Court arraignment was scheduled for Dec. 13.
Patrol officers found the teens' bodies at the Calle Montecito Street open-space about 10:30 p.m. May 3 while responding to reports of gunfire.
The slain teens, who relatives said were boyfriend and girlfriend, had no known gang ties, said Oceanside police Lt. Leonard Mata.
According to court testimony, Hamilton and Gibson -- members of a predominantly black gang -- said they went to the park in rival Hispanic gang territory with Bejaran the night of the murders.
Hamilton told detectives they were smoking marijuana when Bejaran found the victims on a hillside and shot them to death, according to court testimony.
The alleged shooter's girlfriend testified that Bejaran wanted revenge for an attack on Hamilton days earlier.
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