Suspect charged in 2007 murder

January 8, 2009 12:52:28 PM PST
The Contra Costa County District Attorney's office filed murder charges Wednesday against a suspect in the 2007 robbery and killing of 28-year-old Antioch resident Jose Victor Sanchez.

Sanchez had been on his way to catch a bus at 2200 Sycamore Drive to go to an English class shortly before 6 p.m. on Oct. 11, 2007, when somebody threatened him with a knife and then punched him so hard he fell to the ground and hit his head on the pavement, Antioch police said.

Sanchez was taken to John Muir Medical Center, where he died a week later.

Witnesses told police they saw a man going through Sanchez's pockets while he was on the ground. The assailant allegedly fled when witnesses approached him, investigators said at the time.

Several hours after the attack, police arrested Maurice Green, now 29, on Sycamore Drive. He had Sanchez's cards in his pocket, police said.

Green, a parolee, allegedly told investigators that he had just bought the credit cards from someone else.

He was sent back to prison for violating his parole, but was not charged with Sanchez's murder because nobody had actually seen him punch Sanchez, Sgt. Diane Aguinaga said.

Green was released from prison for three or four days in October, but immediately violated his parole and was sent back to prison. He was released again near the end of November, Aguinaga said.

A few days later, on Dec. 1, Green allegedly robbed a woman on Sycamore Drive less than 100 yards from where Sanchez was attacked, Aguinaga said.

Again, Green allegedly threatened the woman with a knife and then punched her hard enough that she fell to the ground and struck her head on the pavement. He allegedly robbed her while she was on the ground, Aguinaga said.

The woman was badly hurt but was able to run home and call police.

Officers responded quickly and arrested Green after a short foot pursuit. He allegedly had the victim's property in his pockets, police said.

In both incidents, Green allegedly targeted Hispanic people who did not speak English, Aguinaga said.

Green is scheduled to be arraigned on charges that he robbed and murdered Sanchez at 1:30 p.m. today in Contra Costa County Superior Court in Martinez, according to court records.

He has already been arraigned on charges that he robbed the woman on Dec. 1, but will likely be heard on that case as well today, a superior court clerk said.