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Man convicted of murder in slaying near Wasco

Man convicted of murder in slaying near Wasco
Posted at 2:13 PM, Jun 06, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-06 17:13:36-04

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — A Kern County jury found a man guilty on June 3rd of first-degree murder in the 2021 deadly shooting of a man near Wasco.

According to court documents, Alvaro Cruz had an argument with Narciso Martinez on June 9th, 2021, over Cruz not paying rent. Martinez told Cruz to leave, Cruz got into his SUV and put the vehicle in reverse toward Martinez who avoid the SUV, according to court documents. Cruz then took out a gun and shot Martinez three times and Martinez died at the scene, according to court documents.

Cruz drove off in the SUV, according to court documents. Kern County Sheriff’s Investigators found Cruz in Corona, Calif., in July 2021 and was taken back to Kern County to face murder charges.

“The use of firearms in the commission of violent crime drastically increases the likelihood of fatal injury, and the law appropriately provides increased punishment for killers who not only commit murder, but do so with use of a firearm,” said Kern County District Attorney Cynthia Zimmer.

Cruz faces a sentence of up to 50 years to life in prison. He is scheduled to be sentenced July 14th.