California teen’s violent crime leads to murder of Marine

California teen’s violent crime leads to murder of Marine

A California teenager is facing multiple charges, including murder, in connection with a “violent crime spree” that led to the death of a U.S. Marine.

The San Bernardino District Attorney’s Office announced in a press release that U.S. Marine Sergeant Robert McDonald, 35, was killed on May 20 during a crime spree carried out by 18-year-old Rudy Garcia Jr.

According to a notice from the sheriff’s office, deputies received a call just before 8 a.m. reporting four to five people drinking alcohol and causing a disturbance in Twentynine Palms. A local resident who reported the disturbance attempted to speak with the group, but they became confrontational, authorities said.

One of the members of the group, later identified as Garcia, fired several shots at the resident, but no one was hit.

Police tape
A California teenager goes on a violent crime spree that leaves a Marine dead.

Stefani Reynolds/AFP/Getty Images

Garcia then left the scene and approached a car parked near a dog park, inside which were McDonald and his dog.

According to the criminal complaint, Garcia “unlawfully used force and fear” to take McDonald’s car, after which Garcia shot McDonald.

McDonald attempted to flee in a vehicle, but lost control and struck another vehicle containing a passenger. Lifesaving measures were unsuccessful and McDonald was pronounced dead at the scene. A passenger in the other vehicle sustained minor injuries.

Garcia again fled but was located nearby and detained by officers, who also recovered the handgun believed to have been used in the shooting.

Garcia was charged Thursday with murder, attempted carjacking, attempted second-degree robbery, two counts of assault with a semi-automatic rifle (personal use of a firearm) and two counts of attempted intentional and premeditated murder.

Garcia was arraigned by video in Rancho Cucamonga Superior Court. He has pleaded not guilty to all charges and is scheduled to appear again on June 7.

The Sheriff’s Special Investigations Division Homicide Unit is investigating the incident.

Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to contact Detective Shawn Thurman of the Special Investigations Unit at (909) 890-4904.

McDonald was stationed at Marine Corps Logistics Operations Group Twentynine Palms, where he served as an operational contract support specialist. He first enlisted in the Marine Corps on June 7, 2010.

“The command grieves with the family and Marines of the fallen soldier and is working diligently to provide them with the support they need during this difficult time,” said a spokesman for Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms. Newsweek.

Authorities said there does not appear to be any connection between McDonald and Garcia.