Witness Recognizes Defendant as Suspect in Robbery

By Marilin Ayon

RIVERSIDE, CA— During a preliminary hearing here in Riverside County Superior Court Thursday, defendant Zeferino Medrano was pointed out as a suspect in an armed robbery by a witness on the stand, and now is set for trial.

Medrano was arrested March 6. According to an article published by MynewsLA.com on May 12, 2021, Medrano and an unidentified accomplice allegedly broke into a business in the city with a firearm.

Officer Ryan Railsback of the Riverside Police Department, reported that the two suspects “stole $12,000 in cash while holding the employees at gunpoint.”

During this preliminary hearing, Deputy District Attorney Doug Baek called one of the employees at the business, who was present during the robbery. The witness communicated in court through a Spanish interpreter.

The defendant’s private attorney, Jonathan Mendoza, questioned the witness regarding his identification of Medrano as one of the suspects in the robbery.

The witness testified that he was able to see the suspect’s eyes and “part of the forehead because he [the suspect] was wearing a cap.” He added that he already knew the defendant because he would often go to the business to ask for his mom, who was also an employee there.

When questioned about how long he remembered seeing the suspect’s face during the robbery, the witness testified he saw both suspects for approximately 40 seconds.

The witness stated that “my attention was focused on the person I knew,” referring to Medrano.

Judge Godofredo Magno ruled: “There is sufficient evidence presented in the preliminary that the crime… was committed. A firearm was personally used and that Mr. Medrano was the individual that committed this set of sentences.”

Judge Magno offered the defendant bail under the conditions that Medrano will report to probation once a week, will stay away from the location where the incident occurred, and stay away from the witness. Medrano will also have to submit to random drug testing to discard any use and possession of illegal substances.

Defendant Zeferino Mendrano’s next court appearance is set to occur at Riverside County Superior Court on Aug. 18 in Dept. 41 at 8:30 a.m.

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