A jury in Santa Ana today convicted a homeless man of killing another homeless man by beating him in the head with a piece of wood.
Sergio Camacho Gonzalez, 39, faces up to 26 years to life in state prison at his sentencing hearing, scheduled for April 5. He was found guilty of murder, with a personal use of a deadly weapon sentencing enhancement.
Gonzalez got into argument with Portland, Oregon, native Andrew Petrusiak, 56, in a Fullerton liquor store on Sept. 27, 2010; the now-convicted man had accused the transient--who also went by Andrew Pieatrucat--of stealing his wallet.
Both parted ways, with Petrusiak heading to a homeless campsite near an alley in an industrial area between Brookhurst Road and Gilbert Street in the 1800 block of West Commonwealth Avenue of Fullerton. Around 8:30 that night, Gonzalez showed up with a piece of wood in his hand, beat the back of Petrusiak's head and fled. Another camper later showed up and discovered the dead man's body.
Andrew Pieatrucat, 2010 OC Homicide No. 45: Conked in Head in Alley
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Gonzalez was known to Fullerton police and suspected early on, partly due to video-surveillance images that captured him entering the campsite and leaving four minutes later that night. But cops had a hard time finding him because he had no known address and was trying to not be found.
An anonymous tip finally led to Gonzalez in Anaheim on March 23, 2011, when he was arrested.