Orange County District Attorney
Tony Rackauckas, District Attorney
401 Civic Center Drive West
Santa Ana, CA 92701
For Immediate Release
Susan Kang Schroeder
GANG MEMBER SENTENCED TO 12 YEARS IN PRISON FOR ATTEMPTED MURDER OF RIVAL GANG
HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT
FULLERTON – A teenage gang member was sentenced Friday to 12 years in state prison for attempting to murder a high school student by stabbing him while on the campus of Sonora High School (SHS). Richard Robert Rodriguez, 18, La Habra, pleaded guilty Friday, Aug. 6, 2010, to one felony count of attempted murder and sentencing enhancements for criminal street gang activity and causing great bodily injury. The defendant was 17 years old at the time of the crime and prosecuted as an adult.
On the morning of Sept. 8, 2009, Rodriguez walked onto the SHS campus in La Habra, where he was not a student. The defendant noticed the victim, a member of a rival gang, and the two began staring at each other, displaying gang hand signs, and making aggressive comments about their gangs.
The victim and Rodriguez went down a flight of stairs to a lower commons area, where the defendant started a fight with John Doe. Rodriguez pushed and stabbed the victim on the right side of the head and the left shoulder blade. He then dropped the knife and fled the scene.
A witness reported the incident to a teacher. The victim was transported the victim to the UCI Medical Center for treatment and has since recovered.
Deputy District Attorney Brett Brian of the Gang Unit prosecuted this case.