Francisco Roy Zavala learned today that he would receive the death sentence for murdering Eric Ronald Sargeant Jr. The victim was killed during an attempted robbery committed in Murrieta on Jan. 14, 2013. Zavala was with two other accomplices, Francisco Siordia and Joseph Venegas, who are in their mid to late teens. The now-deceased teenager, Sargeant, was a student at Hemet High School when he was unexpectedly approached by Zavala and the other teens. When Sargeant refused to give them his cell phone, the assailants stabbed him numerous times with a knife. The victim was rushed to a nearby hospital, but died five hours later.
The convicted murderers have remained in jail since their arrest and were not granted bail. As a 20-year old, Zavala is the only one of the three to face a death sentence. Although the other two will be charged as adults, they will have no chance of being sentenced to death. Members of the Murrieta jury reached their decision unanimously. It is likely that Siordia, Venegas and the recently-condemned knew Sargeant, based on their similar ages and the site’s proximity to their school.
By Jarick Roaderick
Patch: Breaking: Death Sentence For Felon Convicted Of Killing Teen
Los Angeles CBS News: Man, 2 Boys Charged With Murder In Hemet Teen’s Stabbing Death
Photo Courtesy Of Jamie Barrow’s Wikimedia Page – Public Domain License