A fourth man was charged Monday with murder and other counts stemming from the shooting of a man who came to the aid of his girlfriend during an attempted robbery near a Hollywood restaurant last year.
Marquis Ford, 24, of Los Angeles, was arrested last Thursday in connection with the Nov. 23 killing of Jose Ruiz Gutierrez.
The 23-year-old man was waiting in a car outside a restaurant in the 7100 block of Sunset Boulevard at around 2 a.m. that day when his girlfriend was accosted by several armed men while returning to the vehicle, according to Los Angeles police.
Gutierrez was shot and killed after he got out of the car to go to his girlfriend’s aid, police said.
Ford and co-defendants Jayon Sanders, 21, Abraham Castillo and Tyree Singleton, both 20, are charged with one count each of murder, second-degree robbery and attempted second-degree robbery.
The criminal complaint alleges that Ford personally used a semiautomatic firearm in the commission of the crimes.
Sanders is additionally charged with four counts each of grand theft from the person of another and second-degree robbery, along with one count each of carjacking and attempted home invasion robbery involving alleged crimes between June 4 and Nov. 13. The criminal complaint alleges he has a 2020 conviction for robbery.
Co-defendant Joshua Timothy Saulsberry, 21, is charged with one count each of second-degree robbery, carjacking and attempted home invasion robbery involving alleged crimes last Nov. 2, with the complaint alleging that he has a 2019 conviction for burglary.
A Los Angeles Police Department task force on follow-home robberies arrested Sanders, Castillo, Singleton and Saulsberry, with assistance from an LAPD SWAT unit and Beverly Hills, Glendale and Fontana police, last Dec. 21 at various locations in Los Angeles and Fontana.
Detectives recovered a handgun, a replica handgun, more than $30,000 in cash, handbags, a Rolex watch, gang paraphernalia and two vehicles allegedly used in the crimes, police said.
Hours after Gutierrez was killed, LAPD Chief Michel Moore announced that the department would create a task force to investigate “follow-home robberies,” which had increased in frequency in recent weeks.
Ford, Sanders, Castillo and Singleton remain behind bars, while Saulsberry is free on bond posted a week after his arrest, jail records show.