MENIFEE (CNS) – A convicted felon arrested on suspicion of inflicting ultimately fatal injuries on a 60-year-old Menifee resident near a highway last month remained in custody today without bail.
Richard Adam Lopez, 32, who allegedly beat Jose Gonzalez on the night of May 20 in the 27000 block of Highway 74 in Menifee, was taken into custody Thursday in Perris and booked at the Southwest Detention Center in Murrieta on suspicion of murder.
He is scheduled to appear for his initial court date at the Southwest Justice Center in Murrieta on Monday, jail records show.
Riverside County Sheriff’s Department Sgt. Rick Espinoza said Lopez was identified after a two-week investigation by the sheriff’s Central Homicide Unit. An arrest warrant was issued for Lopez earlier this month. The evidence that allegedly pointed to the suspect as the assailant was not disclosed.
The two men were involved in a confrontation that culminated with Lopez allegedly inflicting a traumatic injury to Gonzalez’s head, Espinoza said. It was unclear whether a weapon was used.
Deputies were called to investigate reports of a man down near the highway and discovered Gonzalez unconscious but clinging to life. He was taken to a regional trauma center, where he lingered in a coma until June 1, according to Espinoza.
Lopez has several documented felony convictions in Riverside County, including burglary, vehicle theft and receiving stolen property.