EAST OAKLAND, Calif. -- An ex-felon was sentenced Tuesday to 18 years in state prison for killing a man during a home invasion robbery at a 17-year-old's birthday party in East Oakland in 2013.
Dachaun Dupree, 26, originally was charged with two counts of murder for the shooting outside of a home on 105th Avenue at about 11 p.m. on Aug. 16, 2013, that left two people dead.
But at Dupree's preliminary hearing in 2015, prosecutors only sought to have him stand trial for the death of one of the two victims in the case because of a lack of evidence directly tying Dupree to the other victim's death.
At the end of the preliminary hearing, a judge ordered Dupree, an Oakland man with a prior conviction for pimping, to stand trial on one count of murder for the death of 38-year-old Pablo Armenta-Burgos of Oakland, a count of attempted murder and the special circumstance of committing a murder during the course of a robbery.
But in February, prosecutors allowed Dupree to plead no contest to the lesser charge of voluntary manslaughter for Armenta-Burgos' death as well as the attempted murder charge, and the special circumstance allegation was dismissed.
According to police and prosecutors, Dupree, 19-year-old Bryan Gonzalez and a third man who was never identified and arrested heard about the 17-year-old's birthday party and planned to go there to rob people because many people would be present.
Prosecutors described the case as a robbery that went bad and said Dupree, Gonzalez and the third suspect started shooting at the partygoers, but one of the partygoers, Juan Sedano, fired back and killed Gonzalez.
Sedano wasn't charged because he fired in self-defense.
Prosecutors said the evidence in the case showed that one of the shots fired by Dupree killed Armenta-Burgos, who was another guest at the party, and another shot wounded a third person.
Dupree initially was charged with a second count of murder for Gonzalez's death under the provocative act doctrine, which holds a suspect responsible for an accomplice's death if it occurs during a dangerous felony such as a shooting, even if the suspect didn't kill the accomplice.
However, prosecutors said at Dupree's preliminary hearing that there wasn't enough evidence to ask for him to stand trial on a charge for
Dupree's defense attorney Charles Denton argued at the hearing that Dupree shouldn't be ordered to stand trial for Armenta-Burgos' death, saying there was no reliable evidence he was even at the scene of the
shooting or that he fired shots.
Denton said the evidence in the case was so unclear that it was possible that Armenta-Burgos was killed by one of the shots fired by Gonzalez or a shot fired by Sedano.
Ex-con gets 18 years for fatal shooting at birthday party in East Oakland in 2013