SAN DIEGO (CNS) - A boxing trainer who fatally shot a colleague and two others at a Vista gym two years ago was sentenced Monday to 86 years to life in state prison.
Mark Anthony Diaz, 51, was convicted last year of first-degree murder and other charges stemming from the April 7, 2010, death of 52-year-old Hector Gil.
Boxer Ricky Gutierrez and another trainer, Peter Moreno, were wounded but survived the shooting at Pacific Coast Gym.
Since Diaz's conviction, his attorneys had been looking into the legality of a search of the defendant's jail cell during his trial, in which he said key attorney-client notes were taken and never returned.
The search occurred just before jurors were taken on a "scene visit" to view evidence in the case, defense attorney James Fitzpatrick said last June. The attorney said security shouldn't have been an issue since Diaz had waived his right to be present on the jury's trip into the community.
Fitzpatrick told Judge Kerry Wells that Diaz was going to testify in his own defense, but decided not to when only one of 12 pages of his handwritten notes was returned.
After a hearing Monday, Wells denied the defendant's motion for a new trial and imposed the sentence.
Albert Gamez, a "cut man" who knew both the defendant and the victim, testified at the trial that Diaz called him in February 2010 and asked him not to help Gutierrez with an upcoming fight because Diaz and Gutierrez had had a disagreement. Gutierrez had decided to train with Gil, Gamez testified.
The witness said Gil told him that Diaz had been threatening him.
At another fighter's bout in April 2010, Gil had Gamez listen to voice-mail messages from Diaz, the witness testified.
Gamez said Diaz left a message saying he was "going to blast him or shoot him."
"He (the defendant) said, 'I'm going to blast you, I'm going to shoot you. You're gonna die," Gamez testified. "He (Gil) was clearly bothered by it."
Gamez said he tried to contact Diaz to explain why he was helping Gutierrez, but the calls were never returned.
The witness said Diaz left another message for Gil that said, "You're (expletive) with the wrong person. You watch. You watch. You're gonna get yours."
Salvador Gonzalez, who took his son to train at Pacific Coast Gym, said he and Gil became close, and the victim confided in him about a month before the shooting that Diaz had threatened to hurt him because he had taken his fighter.
The owner of the gym had obtained a restraining order to keep Diaz away from the premises, according to prosecutor Patrick Espinoza.
Sunday marked day two of the government shutdown - and with the work week beginning Monday - thousands of employees may not go back to work.
Temperatures are expected to rise slightly on Sunday, according to the National Weather Service, but will remain cooler than normal.
A motorcyclist was suspected of drunken driving after causing a late-night car crash in Pacific Beach, police said Sunday, and hours later, a second crash occurred in the intersection while police were still investigating.
The San Diego County Planning Commission voted 6-1 last week to recommend that the County’s Board of Supervisors approve the County’s revised Climate Action Plan, with some modifications.
John Coleman, a long-serving San Diego weatherman and founder of The Weather Channel, has died at the age of 83.
Several dogs were taken into the custody of San Diego County and put down, after a Lomita woman reported that her six dogs were attacked and some killed by a group of pit bulls.
Thousands of people marched through downtown San Diego and San Marcos in the second annual Women's March Saturday. The San Diego event began at 10 a.m. at the downtown Waterfront Park on Pacific Highway, while the North County event began at 11 a.m. at Palomar College.
Thousands of people marched through downtown San Diego and San Marcos in the second annual Women's March Saturday. The San Diego event began at 10 a.m. at the downtown Waterfront Park on Pacific Highway, while the North County event began at 11 a.m. at Palomar College. The two marches were held in conjunction with other marches across the country.
The federal government shut down at the stroke of midnight Friday, which prompted the closure of many federal operations, such as national parks and monuments and that included the shutdown of Cabrillo National Monument.
A transient accused of fatally stabbing a man after they got into an argument near a 7-Eleven store in Poway pleaded not guilty Friday to a murder charge.