MARTINEZ -- A gang member executed a bicyclist in broad daylight at Seventh Street and Florida Avenue in Richmond in 2010 because he believed the victim had disrespected his godbrother, a prosecutor told jurors Tuesday.
"The case is about respect and retaliation," deputy DA Danielle Douglas said at the murder trial of 26-year-old Aaron Lamont Miles, charged with fatally shooting 20-year-old Richmond resident Alvin Torres on June 28, 2010.
Torres and his friend were on their bikes at the intersection when the killer approached on foot, shot Torres once in the head, and then shot him several more times as he was on the ground, still straddling the bike.
Defense attorney Joyce Sasse said Miles was falsely identified as the gunman by the eyewitness in 2011, when Torres' friend gave Miles' name to police to get out of a weapons charge. She told jurors the prosecution's case is "based on fiction."
"My client did not have an altercation with Alvin Torres," Sasse said. "My client did not know Alvin Torres."
The killing followed a brief but tense incident that day between Torres and Miles' godbrother in a liquor store while Miles was waiting outside in an SUV, Douglas said. She alleges that Miles is an active central Richmond gang member, and Torres may have been affiliated with a rival gang.
Douglas said Miles and Torres' friend were both in County Jail when Miles attempted to pass the witness a message: a highlighted police report about the man identifying Miles as the killer.
The prosecutor said she will be asking the jury to convict Miles of first-degree murder, criminal street gang participation, and dissuading a witness with an implied threat.
Contact Malaika Fraley at 925-234-1684. Follow her at Twitter.com/malaikafraley.