Westside gang members Marcial Garcia and Christian Botello were sentenced last week to decades in state prison — 35 years and 21 years, respectively — for robbery and false imprisonment in a robbery outside an Eastside market in August 2012. Botello had a prior gang-related felony conviction from 2001, according to the District Attorney’s Office, and Garcia had prior convictions involving robbery and grand theft person with gang allegations in 2006 and 1999.
Garcia and Botello robbed a man sitting in the passenger’s seat of a car parked outside of Mi Fiesta Market. According to senior deputy district attorney Kim Siegel, fellow gang members Luis Jaimes and Juan Carlos Gomez acted as lookouts while Botello knocked on the car’s window and asked the victim, “Where you from?” a typical challenge between gang members. The victim responded that he “didn’t bang” and that he grew up on the Eastside, just before Botello opened the car door to steal the victim’s wallet, cell phone, cash, and social security and gas cards. The victim’s cousin had been inside the market.
The victim reportedly tried to get out of the car, and Garcia threatened to stab him. Jaimes and Gomez pled to participation in the robbery and were sentenced to five years and five years and eight months in prison, respectively.