Local

Man accused in Visalia mall shooting hear testimony

Friday, March 08, 2013

Two South Valley men will soon learn if there's enough evidence for them to go to trial for a shooting at the Visalia Mall last year.

Adrian Esquer and Anthony Hanson could face attempted murder charges for the gang-related shooting.

Esquer and Hanson had few expressions on their faces as they heard testimony against them in a shooting at the Visalia Mall.

Police say the January 27th, 2012 gang-related shooting at The Sweet Factory candy shop injured an opposing gang member and an innocent bystander.

In court on Friday, Visalia Police Detective Ken Smythe described the scene minutes after the shooting.

"A lot of blood on the floor mainly towards the back of the store," Smythe said.

Smythe also said two windows at nearby store Hollister had bullet holes. Smythe testified the employee working at The Sweet Factory at the time of the shooting heard an argument between the suspects and four opposing gang members.

Smythe says the employee ducked behind the counter as she heard the suspect fire between 7 and 10 rounds from a gun.

Next detective Juan Saenz described witnesses' accounts of what the shooter did next.

"She stated the shooter was tracking subjects as he aimed throughout the store," Saenz said.

Later prosecutors had a difficult time with the brother of the gunshot victim and the gunshot victim himself.

The two said they don't remember statements they gave to police-where they identified the shooter and their gang affiliations.

The victim eventually acknowledged he was shot.

"My neck and my elbow and one on my leg," the victim said.

Hanson and Esquer will be back in court on Monday where more witnesses will take the stand. Prosecutors still can't find another brother of the shooting victim despite him receiving a subpoena to testify. The judge issued a $15 thousand warrant for his arrest if he doesn't appear on Monday.

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Tags:
visalia, tulare county, shooting, court, local, jessica peres
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