Diego Arturo Martinez
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In opening statements to a jury on June 16, a defense attorney appeared to impugn the alleged murder victim, saying “everybody knew” the deceased was a drug dealer in the neighborhood and a “multi-convicted felon.”

Retained counsel for Diego Arturo Martinez, now 22, seemed to suggest that Martinez was protecting the children in his home when he opened fire on Robert Robbins, 47, who died after suffering multiple gunshots the night of August 30, 2012.

The defendant and victim lived across the street from each other.

Robbins may have been armed or reaching for a weapon, attorney Herb Weston also suggested to a jury of 7 men and 5 women.

The defender also claimed that the deceased man had three letters tattooed across his stomach: VHB, which stand for Vista Home Boys, a street gang.

Martinez pleads not guilty to one charge of murder and one charge of attempted murder, for also shooting Robbins’s girlfriend Lisa Badgett, who sat in the driver’s seat of a pickup truck in the 4700 block of Calle Solimar, in Oceanside.

Although Badgett suffered at least one shot through her face, she was able to speak to officers that night and did identify her attacker, according to prosecutor David Bost.

Badgett, 51, was the first witness called to testify.

Soon after the shooting, on two occasions and in two interviews, Martinez admitted the shooting to investigators, the prosecutor said. During the second interview the suspect was told that the woman who was shot in the face hadn’t died, and Martinez allegedly replied, “Not yet.”

The trial continues in Vista’s North County Superior Court.

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Eva Knott June 17, 2014 @ 4:15 p.m.

Prosecutor David Bost said that police brought a photo-lineup of possible suspects to Lisa Badget while she was in hospital, and she selected Diego Arturo Martinez as the man who shot her. The prosecutor showed a photo of the circled photo to the jury yesterday, June 16, 2014.


shirleyberan June 18, 2014 @ 12:30 p.m.

Eva - find another job and save yourself. This shit never ends. Somebody waiting for a death he wanted to cause, laughing about it, is too sick for your own health and focus.


Eva Knott June 18, 2014 @ 6 p.m.

Shirley, thank you for your sympathetic wishes. The courthouse is actually a place for optimism, where people hope for some justice. Today we got photos of Donna Lee Darling being put into handcuffs -- she made a plea deal and admitted assault on an old man who said she shoved a pillow over his face.


shirleyberan June 18, 2014 @ 6:51 p.m.

I remember you "covering" that case. When you have to see the lowest of humanity on a constant basis, I would think there is a lot of physical (mental) pain involved for you. If you can do it, you are way better than most.


Eva Knott June 30, 2014 @ 10:20 a.m.

Ten days after they began hearing evidence, late on Wednesday June 25 the jury went into deliberations. They deliberated all Thursday and Friday, and again came back into the courthouse this morning, June 30, 2014. Honorable Judge Sim von Kalinowski presides in San Diego's North County Superior Courthouse.


Eva Knott July 1, 2014 @ 2:43 p.m.

After deliberating almost four days, this afternoon, July 1, the jury declared Diego Arturo Martinez not-guilty of first degree murder in the shooting of Robbie Robbins and not-guilty of attempted voluntary manslaughter for shooting Lisa Badgett in the face. Story update will be posted soon, you will find out what the jury foreman said.


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