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Suspect in fatal shooting of Lompoc soldier pleads not guilty

One of two men accused of shooting and killing a soldier who was visiting family in Lompoc last month has pleaded not guilty to murder charges.

Francisco GutierrezOrtega, 24, of Santa Maria appeared in Lompoc Superior Court on Thursday to enter his plea.

GutierrezOrtega was arrested last month for the shooting death of 22-year-old Marlon Brumfield of Lompoc. Brumfield was visiting family in Lompoc while on leave from Germany. He was shot and killed near the intersection of Ocean Avenue and A Street on Sep. 8.

A second suspect, identified as 25-year-old Walter Morales Jr., is still wanted by police.

Police say the shooting appears to be a random attack and the two men had no prior contact with Brumfield. Both GutierrezOrtega and Morales are believed to be affiliated with a local criminal street gang.

GutierrezOrtega is currently being held in jail on a $2 million bail.

Brumfield’s death was the sixth homicide in Lompoc this year. That number now stands at seven after 15-year-old Erik Villa Vargas was shot and killed this past weekend. Raymond Ramon Vega, 25, was arrested in connection to that homicide Wednesday evening.

KEYT 2019

Article Topic Follows: Crime & Courts

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