Orange County District Attorney
Tony Rackauckas, District Attorney
401 Civic Center Drive West
Santa Ana, CA 92701
|For Immediate Release|
November 6, 2006
TORRANCE GANG MEMBER CONVICTED OF MURDER FOR KILLING MAN IN FULLERTON GANG FIGHT
SANTA ANA – A Torrance gang member was found guilty today of murder for acting as the driver in a gang-related shooting that left one man dead and three men seriously injured. Yong Bae Hong, 24, Torrance, was convicted of murder, six counts of attempted murder, seven counts of shooting at an occupied motor vehicle, conspiracy to commit assault, and street terrorism, with enhancements for criminal street gang activity and the vicarious discharging of a firearm causing death. He faces a minimum sentence of 200 years to life in prison, and is scheduled to be sentenced on December 7, 2006 at 9:00 a.m. in Department C-45, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.
On September 8, 2000, members of an Orange County criminal street gang were at a bar in Garden Grove and felt disrespected when they were verbally confronted by several Asian males associated with a Torrance criminal street gang. In order to save face for the perceived indignity suffered at the bar, the Orange County gang made arrangements to fight the Torrance gang.
On September 12, 2000, members of the Orange County gang drove to Emery Park in Fullerton in five separate cars with plans to ambush the Torrance gang members. They parked one car in plain sight and attempted to hide the other four cars. The Torrance gang members arrived in two cars with eight people and a handgun. The lead Torrance car determined that an ambush was planned and called the second car to alert them that the lead car was being followed.
The lead Torrance car fled the park, followed by four or five of the Orange County vehicles, and the second Torrance car followed behind the Orange County cars. The lead Torrance car eventually unknowingly drove into a cul-de-sac and attempted to make a u-turn. The Orange County cars followed suit. The second Torrance car was driven by Hong, and was the last to enter the cul-de-sac.
As the lead Torrance car was leaving the cul-de-sac, the driver, Jason Liu, 37, is accused of giving the command via cell phone to occupants of Hong’s vehicle to “blast” the Orange County gang. Passenger Kevin Kim, 26, Torrance, is accused of standing up through the sunroof of the second Torrance car and firing at the Orange County cars. Three people were seriously injured and victim Russell Su was killed.
Liu is on the Orange County District Attorney’s Most Wanted list and is believed to be in Taiwan or South Korea. Defendant Kim is scheduled to begin trial for murder on December 18, 2006.
Senior Deputy District Attorney Jerry Schaffer of the Gang Unit prosecuted this case.