4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Escondido man guilty of double-murder for shooting pregnant girlfriend

Ruben Anthony Cepeda convicted after 2 week trial

After less than four hours deliberations, a jury declared Ruben Anthony Cepeda guilty of two counts of second-degree murder for shooting his pregnant girlfriend. The jury found true the allegation that Cepeda fired the weapon, but did not find true that the shooting was “intentional.”

The jury’s decision implies that even if the pulling the trigger was not intentional, the act of pressing a loaded gun to the belly of a pregnant woman was so knowingly dangerous and wanton that it created “implied malice,” the prosecutor explained after the verdict.

Medical examiner Dr. Steve Campman had testified that the bullet wound had “soot and searing around it” with no “stippling,” which he concluded meant it was a “contact” shot. Dr. Campman stated that blood loss of the mother caused blood loss and loss of oxygen and then death to the male fetus, which was 16-weeks gestation.

It was not disputed that Cepeda shot 18-year-old Viridiana Rodriguez the night of April 7, 2012, in Escondido, California.

“We’re pleased that the jury honored the life of an unborn the same as an adult victim,” prosecutor Keith Watanabe said after the verdict today, September 4, 2013.

Cepeda could be sentenced to 80 years to Life in prison, depending if the judge chooses to run times concurrent or not, according to the prosecutor.

The defendant has admitted that he has a prior conviction in the juvenile system for robbery, as a violent and “strike” offense; that occurred in 2007, when he was 16.

Ruben Anthony Cepeda, 22, is scheduled to be sentenced October 11 by the same judge who heard trial, Honorable Harry Elias, in San Diego’s North County Superior Courthouse, California.

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

L.A. angst over newspaper loss not mirrored in San Diego

Jen Campbell sucks up GOP money
Next Article

Jerry Schad hiker extols Ryan Brothers

O.B.'s homeless not Newbreak Coffee's fault

After less than four hours deliberations, a jury declared Ruben Anthony Cepeda guilty of two counts of second-degree murder for shooting his pregnant girlfriend. The jury found true the allegation that Cepeda fired the weapon, but did not find true that the shooting was “intentional.”

The jury’s decision implies that even if the pulling the trigger was not intentional, the act of pressing a loaded gun to the belly of a pregnant woman was so knowingly dangerous and wanton that it created “implied malice,” the prosecutor explained after the verdict.

Medical examiner Dr. Steve Campman had testified that the bullet wound had “soot and searing around it” with no “stippling,” which he concluded meant it was a “contact” shot. Dr. Campman stated that blood loss of the mother caused blood loss and loss of oxygen and then death to the male fetus, which was 16-weeks gestation.

It was not disputed that Cepeda shot 18-year-old Viridiana Rodriguez the night of April 7, 2012, in Escondido, California.

“We’re pleased that the jury honored the life of an unborn the same as an adult victim,” prosecutor Keith Watanabe said after the verdict today, September 4, 2013.

Cepeda could be sentenced to 80 years to Life in prison, depending if the judge chooses to run times concurrent or not, according to the prosecutor.

The defendant has admitted that he has a prior conviction in the juvenile system for robbery, as a violent and “strike” offense; that occurred in 2007, when he was 16.

Ruben Anthony Cepeda, 22, is scheduled to be sentenced October 11 by the same judge who heard trial, Honorable Harry Elias, in San Diego’s North County Superior Courthouse, California.

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Comments
2

"La vida loca", Escondido style. And so the dumb jerk spends what is basically the rest of his life in the joint. If he ever gets out, he'll be a broken old man.

Sept. 5, 2013

Ruben Anthony Cepeda was sentenced to 40 years prison this morning, October 25, 2013. He will be eligible for parole after 38 years and six months in State prison, according to the prosecutor, Keith Watanabe.

“Leniency is in the eye of the beholder,” said the Honorable Judge Harry Elias. He spoke to both supporters of the defendant and family of the woman who was killed, in court today.

The father of the deceased, Jose Rodriguez, spoke to the judge before sentencing. The tall man leaned on a podium and wiped his eyes while he described how the tragedy affected his family. “I know there is a God who will heal me,” he said. “We are trying to find peace.” Mister Rodriguez concluded by wondering aloud if the judge had a daughter, “and I hope there will be justice.”

Ruben Cepeda took opportunity today to apologize to the family of the victim, and said the shooting was an accident. And he said, “I do think about this everyday, and I dream about it too.”

Before sentence was declared, defense attorney Jim Weintre asked the judge to “modify” the jury’s verdict from second-degree murder to involuntary manslaughter, but the judge declined. “I don’t believe the jury was confused,” Judge Elias said. He declared it was not “appropriate” for him to “arbitrarily” change the jury’s verdict.

Marianne Barrajas, the defendant’s mother, told the judge that the shooting was “not a malicious act” and begged the judge to “have some leniency.” Ms. Barrajas said “I had Ruben at a young age, I think I was fifteen” and she wanted to share some blame for his “juvenile troubles.” (Prosecutor Watanabe presented evidence that Ruben Cepeda had extensive criminal history as a juvenile, with multiple violent offenses, including robbery.)

Ruben Cepeda’s sister and aunt and grandmother also requested leniency. Grandma Sanders said “this was just a tragic accident” and “the damage is done” and “I wish that time served would be the end of it.” Judge Elias noted that Cepeda has 502 days “custody credit” as of today, October 25, 2013.

Oct. 25, 2013

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Drinks All Around — Bartenders' drink recipes Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories Fishing Report — What’s getting hooked from ship and shore From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town The Gonzo Report — Making the musical scene, or at least reporting from it Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Outdoors — Weekly changes in flora and fauna Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Street Style — San Diego streets have style Surf Diego — Real stories from those braving the waves Theater — On stage in San Diego this week Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close