A 27-year-old gang member was convicted of first degree murder and attempted murder by a Merced County jury on March 9 in connection with a 2016 shooting in Delhi, the Merced County District Attorney’s office announced.
Juan Gonzalez, a member of the Ghost Town Sureno gang, was found guilty of the murder of 23-year-old Abram Hernandez and the attempted murder of his girlfriend, Sheila Koehn, 50, of Delhi, as the couple walked home from an errand at a nearby 7- Eleven store around 10:30 p.m. on March 6, 2016. A video from the 7-Eleven store played for the jury showed Gonzalez in the store when Hernandez and Koehn entered and showed him leaving in a white truck.
During their walk back to Koehn’s house, she observed the same white truck that she saw Gonzalez in at the 7-Eleven parking lot pass by them multiple times. After she saw the truck pass for the second time, she saw Gonzalez run around the corner onto the street they were walking on and brandish a firearm. At that point, Hernandez pushed Koehn out of the way and told her to run. Gonzalez fired at least seven rounds at Hernandez and Koehn killing Hernandez and hitting Koehn once in the back of her leg as she was running away.
“We thank the jurors for their service and the citizens of Delhi who came forward to report this crime and testify about what they witnessed,” said Supervising Deputy District Attorney Nicole Silveira who prosecuted the case. “Without good Samaritans like them, we would not be able to prosecute these violent gang crimes and make our community a safer place,” she added.
Gonzalez will be sentenced on April 13 and faces life in prison without the possibility of parole.