Trio charged with 16-year-old Hemet boy’s murder

MURRIETA – A parolee and two juveniles accused of killing a 16- year-old East Hemet boy during a robbery were charged today with first-degree murder.

Francisco Roy Zavala, 20, of Hemet, Francisco Siordia, 17, of San Jacinto and Joseph Venegas, 15, of Hemet are accused in the Jan. 14 slaying of Eric Ronald Sargeant Jr.

The defendants, all in custody and being held without bail, are slated to make their initial court appearance this afternoon at the Southwest Justice Center in Murrieta.

They’re each facing a special circumstance allegation of killing during the commission of a robbery. That could make Zavala eligible for the death penalty if he’s convicted.

The District Attorney’s Office is prosecuting Siordia and Venegas as adults, but because of their ages, they would not face capital punishment if found guilty.

The vitim was fatally stabbed near the intersection of Acacia Avenue and Cherrywood Drive, not far from his home.

The boy was walking in the neighborhood around 5 p.m. when he was confronted by three to four males, who demanded he hand over his mobile phone, witnesses told sheriff’s deputies. The teen was attacked when he refused to comply, with Zavala allegedly stabbing him multiple times, according to investigators.

The victim was airlifted to a hospital to undergo surgery, but succumbed to his injuries five hours after the attack.

His assailants fled through a vacant field and disappeared from sight, but all were arrested within three days.

According to court records, Zavala has a 2011 conviction for burglary and a 2010 conviction for vandalism. Two weeks after he was sentenced to probation for the latter crime, he committed the burglary, records show.

7 Responses to "Trio charged with 16-year-old Hemet boy’s murder"

  1. A mom   January 22, 2013 at 9:21 pm

    Dear Riverside County court system, please send me my jury summons now please!

  2. Many Friends   January 23, 2013 at 1:42 am

    We Loved You Eric and You Will Be Forever in our Hearts!!! This was so Senseless to have you taken out of our lives because of Stupidity!!! God Bless This Town!!!

  3. Another mom   January 23, 2013 at 7:00 am

    My thoughts & prayers go out to Eric’s family.
    @ A mom: Sent my request in too. Probably the only summons I wouldn’t mind receiving.

  4. auntie   January 23, 2013 at 11:08 pm

    Why? I don’t understand. They could have my phone, or take my life. Why my nephew……why?

  5. Preston   January 24, 2013 at 8:45 am

    Stop voting to be soft on crime, please. I would gladly pay the price to keep criminals locked up especially if we also vote to make prison a real punishment instead of a country club.

  6. Valle Vista Friends   February 2, 2013 at 11:26 pm

    We have not Stopped thinking of you ERIC!! You will ALWAYS be in our hearts! God Be with your family forever because life is NEVER gonna be the same with out you Eric!! This has got to be the most senseless way to pass away! Why is this world getting so unbelievable?? You hear things and just say WHY??? My God the elderly, the kids, breaking into houses, shooting. ect ect ect want to go for a walk at night or now even during the day? We all have to ask WHY?? PRAY FOR PEACE!! Whats that saying???? We all know it!!! Can’t we all just get along?

  7. 3 year home owner in Fallbrook.   March 14, 2013 at 5:58 pm

    Four lives gone now. For what reason???


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