Suspected gang members charged with murdering off-duty LAPD officer, according to DA

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Suspected gang members were charged Tuesday with killing an off-duty Los Angeles police officer, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office.

Cristian Facundo, 20 of Murrieta, and Franciso Talamantes III, 23 of Temecula, were each charged with one count of murder and two counts of attempted murder with the special circumstance allegation of murder while they are active participants in a criminal street gang for allegedly killing Juan Diaz. The charges make them eligible for the death penalty.

Both suspects along with a third suspect Ashlyn Smith, 19 of Temecula, also each face one count of shooting at an occupied motor vehicle and vandalism.

Diaz was off-duty with his girlfriend and her brothers on July 27 eating at a taco stand in the area of Avenue 26 and Artesian Street when he was shot and killed after he saw people tagging a building and told them to stop, police said.
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