Oxnard Gang Member Sentenced For Role In Deadly Shooting
Wednesday September 13, 2023
Update--An Oxnard gang member was sentenced Wednesday to 22 years in prison for his role in a gang-related shooting that left one man dead and another wounded.
Alejandro Morales, now 39, was originally charged with First Degree Murder and attempted murder in the February of 2014 shooting on Mariposa Street that killed 24-year-old Joshua Van of Oxnard and wounded a then 18-year-old male.
Morales was not the shooter, but prosecutors say there was evidence to show he was involved including supplying the gun, driving the shooter to the location, and statements he made after the shooting.
The defense disputed that and claimed Morales was not aware of what was going to happen.
Morales underwent two trials.
In the first trial, the jury deadlocked 10-2 for conviction and a mistrial was declared.
In the second trial, a new jury found Morales not guilty of First Degree Murder, but they deadlocked 11-1 for conviction on charges of Second Degree Murder and Attempted Murder.
Prosecutors had considered seeking a third trial but agreed to a plea deal in July that involved Morales pleading guilty to voluntary manslaughter and attempted murder plus admitting six special allegations.
At Wednesday's sentencing hearing, family members and friends of the victims made victim impact statements before the judge sentenced Morales to 22 years in prison.
The actual shooter, Jesus Duarte of Oxnard, pleaded guilty in 2018 and was sentenced to 89-years-to-life in prison.