Discussion in 'Recently Sentenced and Beyond' started by bessie, Sep 4, 2014.
CM's brother-in-law's Civic on the left, Gianni's Camry on the right. Very similar vehicles.
Not that I notice every little thing, nor would I probably make a good witness, but I don't see any similarities between CM and GB.
How could CM ever be mistaken for Gianni? IMO, it must've been someone other than CM.
Gianni was tall, wavy to curly hair, and had more of a lean body type.
CM doesn't really look at all like GB, plus he's much shorter. I don't know, but that's my opinion.
Attorney Grethen von Helms' thoughts on a death penalty ruling . . .
"The prosecution does not have a motive -- something juries prefer when ruling on a proper sentence.
"It helps to explain why this may have happened, but it is not necessary to obtain a conviction,”
Attorney Mark Carlos' thoughts on an unprecedented move by the defense . . .
After originally waiving his right to a speedy preliminary hearing, Carlo Mercado, 29, reasserted that right last Friday, according to his public defender Gary Gibson. His hearing has been rescheduled from Oct. 20 to Sept. 2.
Criminal defense attorney Marc Carlos -- who is not involved in the case -- told NBC 7 in serious cases like homicides, it is standard for the defense to waive time restrictions on preliminary hearings. "It allows you to discuss the facts with your client, to send your investigators out to speak with witnesses so that you're adequately prepared for the prelim,"
But he said Mercado's defense team may be switching their strategy if they want to move the hearing up.
Carlos believes the decision to reinstate his right to a speedy preliminary hearing was "a tactical reason on the part of the defense lawyer. He knows something that can benefit his client at this point." Sometimes, that tactic could force prosecutors to tip their hand and show what forensic or circumstantial evidence they have against Mercado,
My thoughts . . .
It seems the change to a "speedy" preliminary hearing worked in CM's favor, by shortening the time for the prosecution to collect more evidence to arrive at a motive and support the death penalty.
No known motive or apparent connection to the victims, in an extremely bold triple homicide by a suspect with no criminal record, will be the defense's approach.
The death penalty is risky, and may cause "not guilty" verdicts in the deaths of Ilona and Sal. I don't see it compromising a conviction in the death of Gianni, which CM's attorney admits his involvement. It will be interesting to see if he insinuates CM was present, but not the shooter.
Of course, the prosecution may have its own strategy. I don't believe they have to show all evidence or conclusions drawn from the search warrants at the prelim, only enough to support the triple murder charges. The DA's ruling on the death penalty may be the trump card and indicator there may be undisclosed evidence that directly links CM to all three murders, including a motive, that could force a confession and plea deal. Either way, CM's fate is prison for the rest of his sorry life.
I can't find it now, but immediately following the shootings - XMas eve day - he was described as "dark complected, possibly African American."
Original suspect description . . .
During a news conference Tuesday morning, Lt. Mike Hastings said police are in the process of obtaining surveillance video.
The suspect is described as a man 5-foot-9 to 5-foot-11 tall who was wearing tan pants.
Later updated . . .
New Suspect Description in Christmas Eve Mall Shootings
Lt. Mike Hastings said the suspect is a man wearing a black hoodie with white bands in the biceps area of the sweatshirt, tan pants and white tennis shoes. He is described as an unknown race, standing 5-foot-10 to 6-foot.
6/21/14: CM Booking Date, he was 5'7", 170 lbs.
I didn't mean he resembled Gianni, but possibly the "original" description. Or maybe the taller version was a description of CM's accomplice, if one exists, and it was CM in the drivers seat.
CM was seen on surveillance, and ID'ed by Ilona's coworker and her boyfriend, approaching Ilona to ask where the Wings restaurant was, and observing her from a distance for awhile, before disappearing outside video coverage. That was after they clocked out 12 minutes after midnight. I wonder if the two Macy witnesses were shown the surveillance tapes.
If CM was seen wearing a hoodie w/arm stripes, tan pants and white tennis shoes in the tapes, as seen by the two Macy witnesses, I conclude his body type was misidentified, unless a taller accomplice wore an identical outfit (gang garb? LOL) and shot Ilona and Sal. The described attire was removed during a search of CM's home, but investigators' conclusions were not disclosed in the unsealed warrants we had access to.
I got on this case today because my other 2 were slow.......This case sure took a major U-turn at the tox screens, rehab, and $250 habit.
To clear up some misconceptions about heroin, benzos, and prescription pain killers (oxy, etc.).
*I'm old school, "once a junkie, ALWAYS a junkie".* I've never used heroin and never shot up any type of dope.
My ex DH is a junkie and so is my 33 year old daughter and her husband. They've all OD'd, several times, been on Methadone, gone to numerous rehabs, etc, etc. I only know one heroin addict that dropped the needle and never went back, she's in her 60's. All the rest are dead, in prison, "chipping", on the wagon to push down their resistance level, or using. No such thing as an "old junkie".
Kudos to you who have loved ones fighting the fight. With recidivism at 93-97%, hope escaped me many years ago. You can't change a person. Only they can.
Some random points:
1. The 2nd year of the war in Afghanistan proved to be the opium farmers most profitable year since the Taliban no longer destroyed their fields, and each year proceeding has been record breaking. Hmmm, wonder where all that heroin is going? :thinking: The US market is currently flooded with the highest quality heroin ever seen at bargain basement prices. In many cases it's cheaper than pot.
2. Heroin currently sold on the streets runs between $45 and $60 a gram at a purity in the 90 percentile. 1 gram can keep 2 people "maintained" for 24 hours. "Maintained" as in slightly euphoric, functional, and NOT sick. Junkies "nod out" immediately when they're shooting, slamming....using a needle. It lasts 15-25 minutes. Snorting doesn't cause that immediate "nod", just a chilled out reaction. If someone pays more than $60/gram, they must have "sucker" written all over their forehead, it's a "buyer's market".
3. Compare this to circa late 1970-80's where heroin was $100-$125 a gram at 7-17%. The dealers stepped on it like mad men. "Stepped", "cut", ie., added stuff like mannitol, baking soda, and lactose to decrease the heroin percentage, and bulk up their bags, thus maintaining a demand for their product by their buyers who were coming down. A junkie back then easily had to beg, borrow, or steal apprx. $800 a day. This was after the main sources coming from the Viet Nam conflict had all but dried up. My ex DH got hooked in the Marines during that conflict, and was on body bag detail, at the same hanger used by Frank Lucas. (And it wasn't heroin in the coffins or false bottoms, it was in the body bags) China White ran high at about 17%, Mexican Brown ran about 7%.
4. Cocaine and heroin combined make a "speedball". Example: John Belushi. That explains coke at the crime scene. Coke alone can intensify the "sick" coming down from heroin. I never met a user who used cocaine to get by til their next fix. Almost all that I have come across have used "speedballs".
5. When a junkie can't get any heroin, they go for benzos, and prescription pain killers, far more expensive on the street but it gets them by. Herein lies the dilemma: Dr.s and dentists, over the past decade, have willy nilly prescribed pain killers to their patients and haven't really bothered to question whether their patients are addicted. Specifically teens. Sure, patients who become addicted can get 3-4 doctors prescribing to them, or hit the ER with self inflicted wounds (Migraines are 2 thumbs up on that front).....but wait! For under $25 a day, you can get that same feeling with heroin, don't need a prescription, don't even need to use a needle, and after you get yourself up to snuff (after the initial first time "puke your guts up" experience), no one will even know.
That being said: No one has a $250 a day habit, or 4-5 gram day habit. The human body can not process that amount of high percentage heroin and not shut down.
$250 a day is distribution, paying for one's own usage, stepping on it once and selling "dime" bags at parties and to friends.
Just putting it out there.
When there's a junkie in your life, knowledge is power, it's also knowledge no one should ever have to seek or experience. It's one of those terrible situations that no one can expect or prepare for. It literally rips your heart out.
I guess I missed the relevance of CM's brother-in-law's vehicle - was it in the news?
Was it confirmed that CM lived with his sister and brother-in-law? A man, and woman named Mecardo-Axxxxxx, are associated with that address and are in their 50's. CM is 29. Not saying it's impossible to have a sibling 20+ years older, but unlikely.
Yep, I remember most of it. Thanks obmama.
I commend you on your energy level today.
Lazy sleuther me today with limited energy for some reason. :bored:
If Gianni was using or buying heroin during those hours and Ilona knew it, yep, she WOULD be calling hospitals and jails, because that's just what you do.
Her fear would be based on a possible overdose or drug bust.
I don't think Gianni or Ilona were shooting up. There were no needles found, or rigs if that's the right word, or kits for shooting up. Can someone overdose just smoking heroin? A drug bust could've been what she was worried about to call jails.
Why call hospitals if she wasn't worried about an overdose?
Had GB been threatened? Been slightly suicidal?
It's possible it was simply she worried he got in an accident.
I don't think CM was positively seen on surveillance video or ID'd by the coworkers. My understanding is that the surveillance video is so blurry the person cannot be positively ID'd. I don't recall the coworkers being asked if the man they saw at the mall that night was CM. I don't think anybody can positively put CM at the mall scene at any time.
It's possible he was purchasing heroin for Ilona and Sal, too. Also, I would like to ask any confirmed insiders if they have heard about money missing from the family restaurant?
The photo on the left -- the Civic -- was displayed during the prelim. The detective on the stand said the brother-in-law let CM drive the Civic occasionally. But the brother-in-law could not recall if CM drove it on Dec. 23 or 24.
The prosecution displayed the photo and hinted CM was driving the Civic. The defense hinted through questioning that Gianni's car was the one the witnesses saw driving away.
The brother-in-law has the same first and last name as his father.
Mercado’s lawyer says his client is single and lived with his sister and brother-in-law in Mira Mesa. The suspect’s mother and other sibling live in the Bay Area. Mercado works at Target. Berg says he had no prior criminal history before the weapons charges.
Sorry mod. Am I allowed to link to a single photo of CM on someone else's facebook page? For example, this is nice photo of CM.
No, I'm sorry. You can't link to an individual's social media page unless s/he is a victim or suspect.
Really? Oh dear, that's upsetting for all concerned.
LE collected tan pants at CM's house, as well as from that cocaine dealer's apartment. Nothing found on any of the tan pants collected?
How bout a 1st initial? Some of us might make a connection.
Initials are okay in this case, BUT be careful what you say.
tvscum is correct. The man who approached Ilona and was seen on surveillance video is "unidentified", but described as wearing a black sweater shirt, tan pants and white tennis shoes. Warrant #46063, page 6, line 25 and continues to page 7.
It's a positive sign they collected all 3 items bearing a similarity at CM's house, but nothing has been disclosed as to their findings.
Bessie says an initial is OK. Some of us stalking FB may find a connection!
Thank you so much. I browsed the previous thread and found it, watched the video twice and not a word about who he lived with. The videos are often edited and important snippets are gone. Perhaps at the family's request?
I did find mention of the sister on a CBS 8 video, as well as mother and brother in Northern Cali. I'm familiar with the brother, but first I heard about CM's mother. Gotta go digging!
BTW, Bessie said an initial is OK to ID innocent parties (so we can see CM's pic on FB) as long as we don't disclose identities.
I'm still stuck on the gang connection, particularly an image at this link.
I opened a new window so I could do a side-by-side comparison with current pix on news sites and the much younger CM @ wedding, the features are identical . . .
right eyebrow arched higher and much fuller than the left, acne and ruddy skin tone, slight cleft in upper lip, thin mustache, squinting eyes.
Anyone else see it?
I believe that the victims in this crime were herion Smokers. Does that change anything in your assessment? Can 2 or 3 people smoke $250 of H in a day? Can people who "maintain" still function normally, go to work etc.?
Can herion and cocaine be combined into a "speedball" and smoked?
Gianni seemed to have a steady supplier of herion. So why be obtaining the other drugs (xanx etc...)
Would this still be the answer: