Most Viewed Stories
Defendant in murder trial turns down deal
A trial date has been set for the man accused of last year's shooting death of another man in San Luis after he turned down a plea agreement that called for him to be sentenced to a statutory life sentence in prison with the possibility of parole after 25 years.
Superior Court Judge John Nelson, who is presiding over the case, told Anthony Antwon Mobley during a brief court hearing Friday that turning down the plea agreement could mean he could face an additional 35 to 100 years in prison.
Mobley, 28, has been charged with one count of first-degree murder and seven counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon in the Feb. 26, 2012, shooting death of Jose Ahumada. Ahumada's body was found shortly after midnight in a parking lot on Main Street in San Luis, just a few blocks north of the border.
Nelson explained that under the terms of the plea agreement, the seven other counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon against him would be dropped and he would be sentenced only on the first-degree murder charge, which gives him the possibility of being paroled in 25 years.
However, Nelson told Mobley, if he didn't accept the plea agreement he could be found guilty of those seven other aggravated assault charges during his trial and therefore would face an additional five to 15 years for each count, which then could be added to the sentence he received on the murder charge.
Despite the judge's warning, Mobley refused to accept the plea agreement, which prompted prosecutor William Katz of the Yuma County Attorney's Office to withdraw it completely. The judge then set a trial date for June 4.
Mobley was extradited to Yuma County in July 2012 after his arrest in March in Memphis, Tenn., on unrelated drug charges. Mobley, who had been living in San Luis for nearly two years, is believed to have taken a bus from San Diego to Tennessee in the days following the murder.
Ahumada's body was found shortly after midnight Feb. 26 in the Factor Warehouse parking lot. Witnesses told police Ahumada was shot as he passed by or tried to intervene as an unidentified gunman was threatening another man in the parking lot.
While en route from Memphis to his native state of South Carolina, Mobley was arrested on Yuma County warrants charging him with aggravated assault on a minor and sexual abuse of a minor. San Luis police said at the time they planned to pursue additional charges against him in connection with the slaying of Ahumada.
Ahumada was shot once in the chest and a bullet casing was found near his body. Using surveillance video, police tracked down the car believed to have been used by the killer. The owner of the car, who was dating Mobley, admitted that she loaned him her car the night of the murder.
James Gilbert can be reached at email@example.com or 539-6854. Find him on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/YSJamesGilbert or on Twitter @YSJamesGilbert.