Orange County District Attorney
Tony Rackauckas, District Attorney
401 Civic Center Drive West
Santa Ana, CA 92701
For Immediate Release
Susan Kang Schroeder
OCDA TO OPPOSE PAROLE FOR GANG MEMBER SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON FOR 1994 ATTEMPTED MURDER OF RIVAL
SANTA ANA – Orange County District Attorney (OCDA) Tony Rackauckas is opposing the parole of a criminal street gang member for the attempted shooting-murder of a rival in 1994. Raul Puente Robles, 33, formerly of Santa Ana, is currently being held at Chuckawalla Valley State Prison in Blythe, CA. Robles was sentenced Aug. 18, 1995, to life in state prison with an additional four years for felony counts including conspiracy to commit a crime, attempted murder, and sentencing enhancements for the personal use of a firearm and committing a crime for the benefit of a criminal street gang. He is scheduled for a parole hearing Monday, May 23, 2011, at 3:00 p.m., at the prison before the Board of Parole Hearings, California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitations.
Orange County Senior Deputy District Attorney Paul Odwald will appear at the hearing to defend public safety and advocate for justice. The inmate’s parole plans are non-existent. He has no letters of support, offers of housing, or offers of employment. He does not have any relationships with people in the community who do not have criminal backgrounds.
Attempted Murder of Jose Luis Monje
At the time of the crime, Robles was on probation for carrying a loaded firearm in a vehicle in August 1993. At approximately 12:00 p.m. on March 19, 1994, Robles, then-16 years old and on probation, was driving through a rival criminal street gang neighborhood with co-defendants Irieno Ruiz Jr. and Silverio Israel Ramirez. The defendants were deliberately searching for a rival gang member. Robles recognized 17-year-old rival Jose Luis Monje driving on the same street. Robles pulled out his firearm and shot at Monje while both cars were in motion, hitting Monje’s car. With total disregard for human life, Robles fired bullets in a neighborhood, potentially putting innocent bystanders and children in danger. The victim was able to speed away unharmed while being chased by Robles and his co-defendants, who fled the scene once Monje parked his car and ran into a nearby house. A witness called 911 and shortly thereafter Santa Ana police pulled over the three defendants. Robles was prosecuted as an adult and convicted by a jury April 17, 1995.
Inmate’s Lack of Rehabilitation and Continued Threat to Public Safety
On April 7, 1998, Robles was cited with a serious prison rules violation for a stabbing-assault on an inmate. Four days later, he was cited again for flooding the tier, creating a potentially dangerous situation for prison personnel and other inmates. In May 1998, he was cited for mutual combat without great bodily injury. In June 1998, he was cited for resisting prison staff. In 2002, he was cited on three different occasions for disobeying orders and delaying lock-up. In December 2006, he was cited for mutual combat. On Aug. 12, 2009, a year after his first parole hearing where he was ordered to follow prison rules, Robles was cited for another rules violation for refusing to report to work.
During Robles’ first parole hearing in 2008, he stated that he had only known the gang life and if paroled he would go back to Mexico, where he was born. Robles’ admission of a gang affiliation, his lack of remorse for the 1994 attempted murder, and his continuous criminal infractions demonstrate the serious threat the inmate poses to public safety and shows that he needs to remain in prison.