A man convicted of shooting a cashier to death during an attempted robbery at a gas station in Diamond Bar more than two decades ago was sentenced Friday to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
Lino Jesus Acero — who was 17 at the time of the crime and now is 39 — was convicted March 7 of first-degree murder for the Nov. 18, 1994, killing of 42-year-old Mahfouz Ghabour at an Arco gas station.
Jurors also found true a special circumstance allegation of murder during the commission of an attempted robbery, along with an allegation that Acero personally used a handgun during the commission of the crime.
The jury saw surveillance video of the attack, in which Acero is seen entering an employee hatch to get behind the counter before pulling out a gun and shooting Ghabour in the chest, according to Deputy District Attorney Ross Alari.
A civilian witness who was at the gas station at the time of the shooting identified Acero as the gunman, the prosecutor said.
Acero and another man fled the scene empty-handed, according to the prosecutor.
Homicide detectives reopened the case nearly 10 years after the killing. Surveillance video of the attack was posted on “America’s Most Wanted,” leading to a tip about the gunman, but detectives needed to conduct further investigation, Alari said.
Acero was arrested in 2014 by Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputies and has remained jailed since then. The second suspect is still at large.
— City News Service
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