Woman accused of fatally shooting man at Alpine home pleads not guilty to murder charge

EL CAJON (KUSI) — A woman suspected of fatally shooting a male acquaintance at the victim’s Alpine-area home pleaded not guilty Friday to a murder charge.

Angela Marie Meza, 47, was ordered held on $4 million bail in connection with the death of 42-year-old Lorenzo Rodriguez, whose death initially was reported as a possible suicide.

Deputies dispatched to investigate the fatality in a back-country area just west of Viejas Casino shortly after 6:30 p.m. Tuesday found Rodriguez dead from a gunshot wound to his upper body, according to sheriff’s officials.

Meza, one of several people at the victim’s home on Viejas Grade Road when authorities arrived, was questioned by homicide detectives before being arrested on suspicion of killing Rodriguez. She was booked into county jail early the next morning.

The nature of the suspect’s relationship to the victim and the motive for the alleged slaying were unclear, the lieutenant said.

Meza faces 65 years to life in prison if convicted of first-degree murder and the use of a gun, said Deputy District Attorney Kristi Gill. The defendant will be back in court May 25 for a readiness conference and a preliminary hearing was set for June 2.

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