LA PUENTE — Two La Puente gang members received 25-year prison sentences this week for shooting at a good Samaritan who spotted them scrawling graffiti and tried to call 9-1-1, authorities announced Saturday.
Raul Montes De Oca, 26, and Edmond Gail, 22, pleaded guilty Monday in Pomona Superior Court to attempted murder and illegally firing a gun, along with the special allegation that the crimes were done for the benefit of a criminal street gang, according to Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials and booking records. They are both known “East Side Puente” gang members.
A man was driving about 8:30 p.m. on Nov. 14 of last year at Azusa Avenue and Main Street when he spotted two gang members — later identified as Montes De Oca and Gail — spray-painting graffiti on the wall of a strip mall, sheriff’s officials said in a written statement.
The good Samaritan pulled over in order to call 9-1-1 on his cell phone, but Montes De Oca and Gail spotted him, jumped in their car and drove toward him before he completed the call, Sgt. Luis Trejo said.
The two vehicles met at the mouth of the strip malls parking lot.
“The gang members, peering at the good Samaritan like wolves to a sheep, waived him past them,” he said.
The man stopped at a stop sign nearby and again began to call 9-1-1 when he saw in his rear view mirror one of the gang members pointing a gun at him, officials said. A shot was fired, and the good Samaritan’s rear windshield shattered.
The assailants then got back in their car and drove past the victim, Trejo said, again opening fire from their moving vehicle before fleeing the area. The victim was not shot, but his arm was “riddled with glass fragments” from his shattering car windows.
Deputies spotted Montes De Oca and Gail driving erratically in the area, recognized them as possible suspects in the shooting and arrested them, authorities said. Montes De Oca was detained in the vehicle, while Gail ran from the car and was found hiding nearby.
Gail eventually admitted to Gang Investigator Glen Eads that he threw the .38-caliber revolver used in the shooting in a bush as he fled from deputies and led them to the area where it was later recovered, officials said.
Investigators found that during the shooting, a bullet had gone through the window of a nearby home and lodged in a wall, Trejo said. No one inside the home was hurt.
According to booking records, both Montes De Oca and Gail were sent to serve their sentences at the North County Correctional Facility in Castaic.
PHOTOS of Raul Montes De Oca (top) and Edmond Gail (bottom) courtesy of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.