The crime was so heinous, the 17-year-old accused of a shooting that killed a 3-month-old infant will be charged as an adult, according to the San Mateo County District Attorney’s Office.
Fabian Zaragoza, of East Palo Alto, was scheduled to be in court Wednesday at 1:30 p.m. He faces several charges, including murder with special circumstances of lying in wait and two counts of attempted murder, according to a press release from the District Attorney’s Office.
Zaragoza is being tried as an adult due to the severity of the crime and also his age. He is just six month from turning 18, San Mateo County Chief Deputy District Attorney Karen Guidotti said.
If convicted, Zaragoza could face life in prison without the possibility of parole, Guidotti said.
The shooting occurred in East Palo Alto early Sunday morning as a Redwood City family was leaving a baby shower. Ivonne Garcia-Lopez, 22, was in the back seat of the car with her 3-month-old and 4-year-old sons as the gunfire erupted.
Garcia-Lopez detailed during a news conference Monday how she shielded her 4-year-old from the bullets. Her 3-month-old Izack Jesus Jimenez was hit in the head by a bullet and later died.
Police say the shooting stemmed from a case of mistaken identity. Zaragoza reportedly told police that he had been beaten up by Sureño gang members last week in Redwood City. The teen then allegedly thought he recognized two of the gang members on Wisteria Drive, near where the baby shower was being held.
Zaragoza allegedly went and fetched a gun and, along with an accomplice, went back to the scene, police said. Zaragoza and a 16-year-old were arrested about 12 hours after the shooting. The 16-year-old, who is not being named, is being held on a weapons charge, according to police.