SAN DIEGO — News 8 obtained court documents Friday about a man accused of opening fire inside a Church's Chicken in Otay Mesa, killing one employee.
Albert Lee Blake, a 49-year-old "self-proclaimed gang member," faces 114 years to life behind bars if convicted of the Nov. 6 shooting that killed 28-year-old Maribel Merino Ibanez of San Diego and seriously injured two of her co-workers, according to Deputy District Attorney Jalyn Wang.
On Thursday, Blake pleaded not guilty to murder and attempted murder charges during a court appearance in Chula Vista after being extradited to San Diego in November from Memphis, Tennessee.
According to the affidavit, Blake's phone GPS data allowed authorities to place him in the immediate vicinity of the shooting just before the shooting and showed that he continued using the same phone to contact his wife, Amy Collins, one hour after the shooting asking her for help. The phone was found abandoned the next day in Pomona, California.
When Blake's wife asked about the car he was driving, he said, "she would never get the car back" and stated he would blow the car up, according to court documents.
Collins told authorities in June that Blake suffered a stroke and has been mentally unstable ever since. She also stated that she believes Blake was using PCP.
Based on this evidence, prosecutors say they believe Blake is the person responsible for the killing of Ibanez.
A judge determined a preliminary hearing will take place in February.
Police and prosecutors alleged Blake entered the Church's Chicken restaurant at 3726 Del Sol Blvd, and got into an argument with Ibanez, the cashier, over a fake $100 bill he was trying to use to purchase food.
After Ibanez wouldn't accept the bill, Blake left the restaurant, but returned about 10 minutes later with a gun and opened fire, Wang alleged. Maribel turned to the kitchen and said, "he's back." One of the cooks said she heard three loud pops, dropped to the ground and pretended to be dead.
Ibanez was fatally wounded, and two of co-workers -- both men -- were hospitalized. Wang said one of the men has since been released, while the other remains hospitalized in unknown condition.
The prosecutor alleged that Blake disposed of his car and cell phone shortly after fleeing the shooting scene.
Deputy District Attorney Jalyn Wang says that Blake is not eligible for the death penalty in this case. She asked the judge to hold Blake on $5 million bail.
"I believe he is a true danger to the community," said Wang.
You can read more about Blake's criminal history in San Diego County here. According to Wang, Blake has a history of driving under the influence, domestic violence and burglary.