Remarks by District Attorney Tony Rackauckas
Itzcoatl Ocampo case
February 3, 2012
Thank you all for coming.
This afternoon at 4:45 p.m., Senior Deputy District Attorney Howard Gundy dismissed in court the double homicide case against Eder Giovanni Herrera. He was facing 52 years to life in state prison. The Orange County Sheriff’s Department will be processing and releasing him from custody soon.
I am holding in my hand an amended complaint charging Itzcoatl Ocampo for the special circumstances murder of Mr. Herrera’s mother and brother on October 25, 2011. The complaint will be filed on Monday before he is arraigned.
Ocampo will be charged with having murdered six people.
This case has now expanded from murdering random, vulnerable strangers, to murdering people he knew. It is chilling to know, that these murders took place two months before the murders of four homeless men began.
Here is the summary on the Herrera murders:
On the night of October 25, 2011, Eder Herrera’s 53-year-old mother Raquel Estrada and 34-year-old brother Juan Herrera were found stabbed to death. The mother was stabbed over 30 times with a knife and her body was left on the kitchen floor. The brother was stabbed over 60 times and his body was left in a hallway.
At approximately 11:30 p.m. that night, Brea Police received a tip leading them to the victims’ residence and began investigating the case.
On October 26, 2011, Herrera was arrested as he was driving away from his friend’s home.
There was significant evidence that led to the filing of charges against Eder Herrerra on October 27th.
A witness saw a person he believed to be Herrera, dragging something from the front door threshold into the house. Based on blood evidence at the scene, it appeared that victim Juan Herrera had attempted to escape out the front door before being dragged back inside.
There was no evidence of forced entry into the home.
Herrera spent the evening driving around randomly with a friend. His behavior was suspicious. Law enforcement had evidence to believe that Herrera was in the area at the approximate time the 911 call was placed.