UPDATE, JUNE 23, 11:25 A.M.: Say what you will about the merde swirling around the Orange County District Attorney's office, it has not changed the way the media team expertly loads up a headline. Take this one: "THIRD-STRIKER GANG MEMBER PAROLEE CHARGED WITH SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES SHOOTING-MURDER OF INNOCENT BYSTANDER FATHER ON FATHER'S DAY." How's that for painting a picture? The release goes on to say Jose De Jesus Gomez-Ochoa was charged today with special circumstances murder and that a conviction could send the Tustin 30-year-old to state prison for life without the possibility of parole. Prosecutors also give more details on what allegedly happened Sunday evening: "A rival criminal street gang member was purchasing something from a parked food truck, which belonged to and was being operated by 52-year-old Eliu Armando Gramajo. Gomez-Ochoa is accused of spotting the rival gang member from a distance, gesturing a gang sign with his hand, aiming his gun at the rival criminal street gang member, and firing his gun. The defendant is accused of missing his intended target and instead shooting Gramajo, an innocent bystander and husband and father of three. Gomez-Ochoa is accused of then fleeing the scene in a vehicle." Later, the release turns to the victim: "Instead of spending that evening celebrating Father's Day with his wife and children, Gramajo died at the hospital as a result of the gunshot wound." Gomez-Ochoa is charged with one felony count of special circumstances murder for criminal street gang purpose, one felony count of unlawful possession of a firearm, and sentencing enhancements for the personal discharge of a firearm causing death, criminal street gang activity, the personal use of a firearm, and prior strike convictions for participation in a criminal street gang in 2011 and 2012, and criminal street gang member in possession of a firearm in 2012. Currently being held without bail, Gomez-Ochoa has a continued arraignment hearing scheduled July 15 in Santa Ana.
UPDATE, JUNE 21, 12:25 P.M.: The Santa Ana Police Department just announced that homicide detectives on Monday arrested Jose De Jesus Gomez Ochoa, 30, of Tustin, for the murder of Eliu Armando Gramajo. Gomez "is a documented Santa Ana gang member" and "was a wanted parolee at large" at the time of his arrest, police say. He was booked into the Santa Ana Jail for murder, gang enhancements and parole violations.
ORIGINAL POST, JUNE 21, 10:12 A.M.: The operator of a food truck parked in the wrong place at the wrong time is the latest victim of gang violence in Santa Ana.
Eliu Armando Gramajo, 52, is not believed to have been the intended target of a shooting Sunday evening that is tied to a gang rivalry, according to a Santa Ana Police Department advisory.
Officers got the call at 7:19 p.m. about a man down from a shooting in the 1700 block of South Evergreen, police say.
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Gramajo, who was suffering from a gunshot wound to the upper torso, was treated by medics and taken to an area hospital where he died from his injuries, police say.
"The initial investigation indicates that Gramajo was not the intended target of the shooting and was most likely a victim of gang rivalry," reads the advisory. "Gramajo operates and/or owns a food truck in the area where the shooting occurred and was working when he was shot and killed. Fresh gang graffiti was found in the area; however, Gramajo is not a gang member."
Homicide detectives ask anyone with information to call them at 714.245.8390. A SAPD Gang Homicide Reward Program provides monetary rewards up to $50,000 for anyone providing information leading to the apprehension and prosecution of those responsible for gang-related homicides. Multiple rewards may be awarded on any single case. Those providing information may do so anonymously.