An Inglewood man has been ordered to stand trial for the slayings of two men in a series of shootings last year that were apparently motivated by race, prosecutors said Tuesday.
Daniel Martinez, 31, has been charged with a slew of counts, including murder, attempted murder, shooting from and at a motor vehicle, and possession of an assault weapon, according to a news release from the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.
The charges include multiple special circumstance allegations, including intentional killings because of race, the release read.
The DA’s office initially said the defendant faced an allegation that he was an active participant in a criminal street gang, but later clarified it had been dismissed at a preliminary hearing.
Martinez pleaded not guilty Monday. The pretrial is scheduled for Sept. 23.
The defendant is accused of shooting 26-year-old Samuel Ferguson on the westbound 91 Freeway near Artesia Boulevard on Aug. 17, 2018, according to prosecutors. The shooting occurred in the Cerritos area.
The criminal complaint alleges Martinez killed Samuel Ferguson “because of (his) race.” Officials described the victim as black.
Then, on Aug. 19, Martinez allegedly opened fire on a vehicle that was stopped at a light on West Boulevard near Slauson Avenue in Hyde Park, hitting one victim.
The following day, Martinez is suspected of shooting at three men who were standing in the 900 block of North Beach Avenue in Inglewood, killing 27-year-old Alhmond Davis and wounded the other two.
On Aug. 23, the defendant allegedly opened fire on a stopped vehicle at a stoplight near Hyde Park Boulevard and West Avenue in Inglewood. One man was struck in the head during the drive-by shooting, but survived.
Martinez, who is being held without bail, could face the death penalty or life in prison without the possibility of parole if convicted as charged.
The DA’s office has not yet decided whether to seek capital punishment.
Correction: An earlier version of this article gave the incorrect city for location of the 91 Freeway shooting. The post has been updated.