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Visalian convicted of gang murder

Visalian convicted of gang murder

A gang member accused of killing a man simply for wearing the color blue was found guilty of murder by a jury last week.

On Dec. 23, Emiliano Enriquez, 28, of Visalia, was convicted of one count of first-degree murder and one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm. The jury also found true the special circumstance that the crimes were committed for the benefit of a criminal street gang as well as the special allegation that he personally used a firearm causing great bodily injury or death.

On Nov. 17, 2008, 25-year-old Pedro Nunez was eating his lunch while sitting in his car near a park on Lover’s Lane. Enriquez was driving his girlfriend’s Dodge Caliber with three fellow gang members. He observed Pedro wearing his blue Walmart Assistant Manager’s Polo shirt and wrongly concluded that the victim was a rival gang member.

Enriquez pulled over, walked to the Nunez’s vehicle and shot in the chest and head before returning to the car and driving away.

Witnesses to the crime testified that the person who committed the murder was driving a black Dodge Caliber. Enriquez admitted to police that he was driving the vehicle but did not commit the murder. Enriquez also admitted tattooing his arm with “187Murder” shortly after the crime.

Judge Joseph Kalashian scheduled sentencing for Jan. 25, 2016 in Department 5 of the Tulare County Superior Court in Visalia. Enriquez is facing life without parole in state prison. The case was prosecuted by Supervising Deputy District Attorney David Alavezos and investigated by Visalia Police Department Detective Daniel Ford, as well as Investigator Louie Cantu of the District Attorney’s Office.

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