Jury selection began Wednesday for the murder trial of a man accused of gunning down another man outside an Indio house party.
Steven Lopez, 21, is accused in the May 27, 2016, killing of Jose Arriaga, 22, who was shot multiple times outside a home in the 47500 block of Calle Zafiro. A friend drove Arriaga to John F. Kennedy Memorial Hospital in Indio and he was subsequently airlifted to Desert Regional Medical Center in Palm Springs, where he later died.
Lopez and Arriaga, described as friends in court documents, both attended a house party on Calle Zafiro that night, according to the prosecution. They were allegedly seen showing off firearms to each other during the gathering, then went outside at some point just prior to the gunfire.
Following the shooting, a person was seen speeding away from the scene on a motorcycle.
Lopez was arrested four days later in Indio, when police found him riding in a car that was stopped on Jefferson Street, near Fred Waring Drive. A motorcycle key and a firearm were found inside the vehicle, though court documents state that the gun was not the murder weapon, which has never been recovered.
In addition to murder, Lopez faces a sentence-enhancing allegation of discharging a firearm.