U-Haul murder heading to trial in Santa Maria

November 10, 2014
Anthony Ibarra

Anthony Ibarra

Jury selection begins next week in the trial of six men implicated in the murder of a Santa Maria man whose body was found in a U-Haul truck parked in Orcutt last year. [Lompoc Record]

Following the murder of 28-year-old Anthony Ibarra, police arrested eleven suspects. Six of those arrested are now heading to trial, for which jury selection begins on Nov. 17 in Santa Maria.

Prosecutors allege that gang members tortured and killed Ibarra in March 2013 at a house in Santa Maria. The next day, they dumped Ibarra’s body in a U-Haul truck.

On the day following, police found Ibarra’s naked body inside the truck, which was parked on an Orcutt residential street.

The murder allegedly occurred due to a drug debt that Ibarra owed to the local drug tax collector, Ramon “Cray Ray” Maldonado. The gang expected Ibarra to pay a percentage of his drug sales to Maldonado, and they also accused him of selling drugs from the gang without paying for them.

Maldonado, 37, is one of the six defendants headed for trial. His father, David Murillo Maldonado, is another of the defendants.

Each of the defendants face murder charges.

The trial is expected to last through February.

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their confidence suggest an organized sort of mafia may be in existence

adolescent macho bravado

For some reason, these defendants aren’t taking the charges too seriously (Lompoc Record):

“The six defendants — Ramon David Maldonado, David Murillo Maldonado Jr., Santos Manuel Sauceda, Reyes Gonzales Jr., Jason Castillo and Anthony Jesus Solis — were all smiles as they joked and interacted with their attorneys ….

However, protection of the identify of the jury is being taken seriously:

” …how the jurors will be identified during the trial. Senior Deputy District Attorney Ann Bramsen, who is prosecuting the case against the six defendants, suggested that jurors be assigned a number and that number will correspond with a list that she, Judge Rick Brown and the defense attorneys, will be privy to. Jurors names will never appear on the record, and Brown hopes that will make potential jurors feel a bit safer about serving on the jury”.

Something is very wrong with this picture.

The jurors are scared for their lives while the defendants aren’t because they are idiots. I believe 700 juror notices were sent out but only a fraction responded. They are fearful of retaliation from the gang if they come back with a guilty verdict. Does this sound like Mexican corruption? Yes. This creeping gang crud is only going to get worse. Our local, state and federal govts. are doing absolutely nothing to stop illegal immigration no longer deports. Instead ICE, INS, Border Patrol, and Homeland Security are doing nothing and Obama has released known criminals back into our society instead of deporting them. If you or I committed a crime we would most likely serve jail time but be here illegally and you get set free. The lawlessness in Mexico and South and Central America is here in America and will only grow unimpeded.