OCEANSIDE — After retrieving a handgun from his brother-in-law’s bedroom, Cesar Magdaleno shot the 26-year-old man point blank in the throat, a prosecutor said Oct. 22 in a Vista courtroom.
The new details about the shooting emerged as part of Magdaleno’s brief arraignment hearing. Despite being 17-years-old, Magdaleno is being charged as an adult for allegedly killing Hector Nava in his Oceanside apartment in the 1200 block of South El Camino Real, Deputy District Attorney George Loyd said. If convicted, Magdaleno faces 15 years to life in prison, Loyd said.
Through his attorney, Magdaleno pleaded not guilty to a single count of second-degree murder. Several audience members, who were not associated with the case, gasped as Loyd informed Superior Court Judge Marshall Hockett of the seemingly callous nature of the crime.
Shortly after 9 p.m. Oct. 18, Magdaleno retrieved Nava’s loaded 9mm handgun and then stood in front of him as he sat on the couch and pulled the trigger, Loyd said.
Police said Magdaleno, of Temecula, had been visiting his sister, Antonia —Nava’s wife — at the time of the shooting. Nava, who died as he was being transported to the hospital, was the father of a 10-month-old child, authorities said.
Loyd’s request for bail to be set at $3 million was granted by Hockett. The attorney citied the “severity of the crime” and inconsistent statements Magdaleno gave to police following his arrest shortly after the incident for the high bail. A motive for the shooting has not been released yet.
In an interview following the hearing, Loyd said there are some theories floating around about what prompted the killing, but because the case is still under investigation he said he couldn’t comment further on a motive. Hockett set a readiness conference for Nov. 18. Magdaleno’s trial date is scheduled for Dec. 15.