A 23-year-old man accused of fatally shooting a Moreno Valley resident during a confrontation on the south end of the city pleaded not guilty Thursday to murder.
Angel Carlos Mendoza of Moreno Valley was arrested earlier this month following a Riverside County Sheriff’s Department investigation into the slaying of 30-year-old Manuel Garcia.
Along with murder, Mendoza is charged with sentence-enhancing gun and great bodily injury allegations.
He was arraigned before Superior Court Judge Gail O’Rane, who scheduled a felony settlement conference for Aug. 18 at the Riverside Hall of Justice.
The defendant is being held on $1 million bail at the Robert Presley Jail in Riverside.
According to sheriff’s Sgt. Richard Carroll, about 4 p.m. on May 1, Mendoza was at house in the 24800 block of Heil Drive, near Inlet Street, when he was involved in an unspecified dispute with Garcia.
Investigators allege that Mendoza pulled a handgun and shot the man several times.
Witnesses called 911, and patrol deputies reached the location within a few minutes. According to Carroll, Garcia was taken to nearby Riverside University Medical Center, where he died that evening.
Mendoza was not at the house when law enforcement arrived. However, detectives quickly identified him as the alleged shooter, and he was taken into custody without incident the following morning on Hemlock Avenue, according to the sergeant.
A possible motive for the shooting has not been disclosed.
The defendant has no documented prior felony convictions in Riverside County.
>> Want to read more stories like this? Get our Free Daily Newsletters Here!Follow us: