Trial Begins for Man Accused of Opening Fire at Murrieta Park, Wounding Man

MURRIETA  – Prosecution testimony got underway today in the trial of a 20-year-old man accused of shooting a marijuana dealer in a Murrieta park and trying to shoot three others during a drug-related confrontation.
Leon Manh Boswell of Murrieta is charged with four counts each of attempted murder and firearm assault, as well as one count each of shooting at an occupied vehicle and robbery, and sentence-enhancing gun and great bodily injury allegations.
Boswell’s two alleged accomplices, identified only as teenage boys, were charged in juvenile court. No information regarding their cases was available.
The prosecution and defense delivered opening statements in Boswell’s case Tuesday at the Southwest Justice Center in Murrieta, and the prosecution called witnesses Wednesday morning and afternoon.
Trial testimony is expected to continue into the middle of next week.
According to a trial brief filed by the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office, Boswell and the teens went to Alta Murrieta Sports Park in the 39700 block of Alta Murrieta Drive in the predawn hours of Sept. 14, 2021, for an alleged marijuana sale.
The seller, whose identity was not disclosed, went there with three friends and parked in a BMW to wait for the buyer, one of the teens connected with Boswell, court papers stated.
During a confrontation with the buyer, the drugs were snatched, and the seller attempted to chase after the thief, according to the brief.
“People in the BMW observed a blue laser pointing and scanning over them and the car, and they heard shots fired in their direction,” the brief said. The marijuana seller said that when he realized he was under fire, he turned to flee the park, “hearing the shooter screaming that he was going to kill him,” according to the brief.
Boswell was later identified as the alleged gunman, and according to prosecutors, he unleashed about eight rounds from a 9mm handgun, with one bullet striking the marijuana seller in the buttocks, causing him to fall face-down in an athletic field.
Several bullets also struck the BMW, whose occupants immediately drove away, leaving their wounded friend behind, according to the brief.
“Boswell then came up to (the victim) and robbed him of $13 in cash he had in his wallet, along with a bank card,” documents stated.
“Patrol officers arrived at the park moments later to investigate the shots fired calls and found the wounded man, as well as multiple 9mm bullet casings. They interviewed the man in the hospital, and spoke to his three associates in the BMW, quickly identifying Boswell as the alleged shooter and serving a search warrant at his residence “right around the corner from the park,” according to the brief.
“During the search, they found four firearms, with one of them being a 9mm ghost gun with a blue laser on the bottom of it … hidden in his room,” the prosecution alleged.
Boswell was taken into custody without incident on the afternoon of Sept. 14, 2021. The two teens were also arrested the same day.
The defendant has no documented prior felony convictions in Riverside County.
Copyright 2023, City News Service, Inc.

City News Service (CNS)