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Armando Cruz enters not guilty plea in rape, killing of 13-year-old Patricia Alatorre

Posted at 8:41 AM, Nov 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-05 10:29:57-04

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — The man accused of raping and killing a 13-year-old girl in Bakersfield last summer entered a not guilty plea during his arraignment Thursday.

Armando Cruz was in court in October after he was indicted by a grand jury. He's facing 12 felony counts including rape and first-degree murder. He could face the death penalty if convicted.

His next scheduled hearing is Dec.14th.

Patricia Alatorre disappeared last summer from her South Bakersfield neighborhood near Cresent Ridge Street.

Cruz, an Inglewood resident was arrested by Bakersfield police in the Los Angeles area after authorities located his pick-up truck that was seen leaving Alatorre's neighborhood at the time she disappeared.