Escondido man convicted of murder to learn fate

VISTA (KUSI) – Sentencing is expected at the Vista courthouse Thursday morning in the case of an Escondido man was was convicted of first-degree murder in the death of a man who did work for the defendant’s landlady.

60-year-old Michael James Hemphill was found guilty in the April 2013 death of Brandon Sanchez. Hemphill faces as much as 50 years to life in prison.

The 35-year-old Sanchez, officials said, was shot in the chest and died at the scene. After initially telling police that the shooting was an accident, police determined that a confrontation between the two men prompted the shooting in the 600 block of McDonald Lane. The landlady of the property had used Sanchez in the past for maintenance jobs and other assorted work.

The confrontation between the two men may have been sparked when, on behalf of the landlady, Sanchez discussed unpaid rent and other concerns with Hemphill.

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