Man Arrested in Santa Monica Slaying | NBC Southern California

Man Arrested in Santa Monica Slaying

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Earlier this year, an 18-year-old man was found dead with a single gunshot to the head. On Friday, police announced his alleged killer had been arrested and charged with murder. Angie Crouch reports for the NBC4 News on Friday, May 19, 2017. (Published Friday, May 19, 2017)

    A 42-year-old man has been arrested and charged with murder in the death in Santa Monica earlier this year of an 18-year-old found with a single gunshot wound to the head, authorities announced Friday.

    Juan Sebastian Castillo who played football at Santa Monica High School and graduated last year, was found just after 5 a.m. on Feb. 26, lying on the ground in the 1300 block of 16th Street, near the UCLA Santa Monica Medical Center, police said.

    Paramedics pronounced him dead at the scene, according to Santa Monica police Lt. Saul Rodriguez.

    "Through extensive and thorough investigative efforts, detectives have been able to link Juan Castillo's death to a shooting that occurred earlier that morning about 12:45 a.m. in the 2100 block of Pico Boulevard and the identification of a possible suspect,'' Rodriguez said.

    Teen Gunned Down in Santa Monica

    [LA] Teen Gunned Down in Santa Monica

    Friends and family are in shock after a teenage boy was found dead in the street near UCLA Medical Center. Christine Kim reports for the NBC4 News at 11 on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017.

    (Published Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017)

    The Pico Boulevard location is about a mile away from where Castillo was found.

    The suspect, identified as Sherwin Mendoza Espinosa of Los Angeles, was arrested Wednesday morning, according to sheriff's inmate records.

    He was charged today by the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office with one count of murder and two counts of being a felon in possession of a loaded firearm.

    Espinosa appeared today at the Airport Courthouse, where his arraignment was continued to June 5, according to the District Attorney's Office, which reported that he remains in custody with bail set at $3 million.

    No motive for the killing has been established, but investigators continue to work that angle of the case, according to Rodriguez, who said the suspect and victim had no known prior relationship.

    Castillo's grieving father still wears his son's varsity jacket, Rodriguez said.

    18-Year-Old Found Dead in Street in Santa Monica

    [LA] 18-Year-Old Found Dead in Street in Santa Monica

    A teenager was found dead in the street near the UCLA Medical Center in Santa Monica and investigators are working to determine if his murder is linked to a shooting at a liquor store. Christine Kim reports for the NBC4 News at 6 on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017.

    (Published Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017)

    Anyone with information about the killing was urged to call the detectives investigating the case at 310-458-8478 or 310-458-8949. Santa Monica police also can be reached at 310-458-8478. Anonymous tips can be submitted through Crime Stoppers by calling 800-222-TIPS.

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