Suspects In Libby Lake Shooting To Be Arraigned
Four suspects in the fatal shooting of two teenagers at Libby Lake Park in Oceanside are expected to be arraigned in Vista Superior Court today.
The suspects are two 19 year olds, Michael Zarita and Martin Melendrez, both of Vista, and Santo Diaz, 18, of Oceanside. The fourth suspect is a juvenile. They are booked on charges of murder, attempted murder and participation in a criminal street gang.
All four were arrested two weeks after Melanie Virgen, 13, and Edgar Sanchez, 15, were found shot to death on March 13th in Oceanside's Libby Lake Park. Two other teens were wounded and transported to local trauma hospitals. One has since been released and the other is expected to recover.
Oceanside police served five search warrants at homes in Oceanside and Vista before making the arrests early Saturday.
Oceanside police say the investigation is ongoing and no specific information can be released about the gangs involved. Libby Lake Park was the scene of a gang-related shooting two years ago that left two teens dead. That shooting involved a Latino gang and a gang that is predominantly African American.
Police tell KPBS there is no connection between the two incidents although they made the arrests based on leads that indicated the recent murders were gang related.
Robert Al'c Bejeran, the 19-year-old shooter in the 2011 murder case, faces the death penalty as his trial begins in September. His bail was set at $5 million.