One of Santa Barbara’s 30 alleged “baddest of the bad” gang members faces a maximum of 10 years in state prison after he was convicted Thursday morning of three crimes, including possession of a firearm by a felon.

In addition, Marcos Ramos, 33, was convicted of possessing ammunition. The jury of six men and six women found him not guilty of possessing a controlled substance with a firearm, and was hung on a count of heroin possession. They were hung 11-1 in favor of guilt on the drug possession charge.

Ramos, an alleged Westside Projects gang member who was named in the citywide gang injunction introduced last March, was arrested in February 2010 when police responded to a trespassing call at 33 ½ Parker Way. According to testimony, Ramos and another man were in the vacant apartment. Officers alleged in testimony that there was a Browning .22 caliber semi-automatic handgun in a bag in the hallway of the apartment, and items used for cooking and injecting heroin were found.

The defense largely focused on an informant, who spent time in jail with Ramos and said Ramos told him about the crime. Defense attorney Nathan Poulos said the informant was just looking for a way to reduce his potential jail time. He also argued the prosecution had no proof Ramos knew the bag was there.

But the jury, which began deliberations late Tuesday afternoon, and announced they had a verdict just before 11 a.m. Thursday, disagreed when it came to the weapon.

Ramos has two more pending cases, one involving vandalism he allegedly committed in the County Jail, and another for unlawful possession of a knife and possession of methamphetamine. He has served two prior prison sentences and also admitted a previous strike conviction for an assault with a deadly weapon.

Ramos will be back in court on August 16, where the two sides will work to resolve his other cases, before being sentenced in this case.


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