Encanto mall shooter pleads not guilty to first-degree murder charge

ENCANTO (KUSI) – A man accused of driving into rival gang territory in Encanto pleaded not guilty Monday to a first-degree murder charge.

Jared John Casey, 24, was already in jail under charges of domestic violence. He now faces attempted murder allegations stemming from his possible involvement in the afternoon shooting that occurred on Oct. 7.

On Oct. 7, patrol officers responded to a shooting shortly after 1:30 p.m. on the 6200 block of Imperial Avenue to find 25-year-old Albert Franco and another man suffering from wounds to their upper bodies.

Deputy District Attorney Laurie Hauf told Judge Robert F. O’Neill that day, Casey drove to a gas station, then a minute later to a trolley station in the 6200 block of Imperial Avenue.

After a short conversation with the victims, Casey fired five to seven shots, killing Franco with a bullet to the chest and wounding Robinson, the prosecutor alleged.

Casey fled the scene and four days later led police on a high-speed chase that ended with his arrest, Hauf said.

Witnesses told investigators they saw the shooter flee in a gray or blue four-door sedan while shortly after medics took Franco to a hospital. Franco, a San Diego resident, died from his wounds and while the second victim, whose name has not been made public, was expected to survive. 

Bail has been set for Casey at $5 million. 

The defendant faces 50 years to life in prison if convicted.

A readiness conference is scheduled Oct. 26 and a preliminary hearing for Oct. 28.

Categories: KUSI