Suspect in drive-by pleads guilty to conspiracy

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WALLA WALLA — A second alleged gang member accused in the shootings of two people in a car this summer has pleaded guilty to a reduced charge in Walla Walla County Superior Court.

Cisco Antonio Gonzalez, 18, entered the guilty plea Friday to one count of conspiracy to commit drive-by shooting.

He initially was charged with two counts of first-degree assault, two counts of first-degree malicious mischief, one count of drive-by shooting and one count of first-degree unlawful possession of a firearm. If convicted of those charges, he would have landed in prison for decades.

Based on his criminal history, Gonzalez faces a standard-range prison term of about 2 to 2½ years when he’s sentenced.

But Prosecuting Attorney Jim Nagle agreed to recommend a time-served sentence in exchange for Gonzalez agreeing not to seek the identity of a confidential informant who claims to have witnessed the shooting, and to testify truthfully against a co-defendant.

Gonzalez didn’t admit guilt when he entered the plea Friday, but acknowledged the prosecution has evidence that can convict him. He then was released from the County Jail to live with his father in Wenatchee until sentencing.

Gonzalez and co-defendant Cristian Bianey Jaimes, 20, were arrested Aug. 22. Two other suspects — Gonzalez’s brother, Gerald Candelario Gonzalez Jr., 20, and Carlito Angelino Garcia, 18 — remained at large Friday.

Officials say at least three of the four were armed with handguns as they were riding in a white truck that arrived near Sixth Avenue and Moore Street early on the morning of July 20.

They then fired multiple times at Johnny A. Jimenez and his girlfriend, Tracy A. Diaz Bobadilla, who were in Diaz Bobadilla’s 2007 Nissan Altima, according to police.

Jimenez tried to back up the car to escape the continued shooting and crashed into the building at 400 W. Moore St. Those in the white truck fled.

Both victims were hit by gunfire. They were treated and released at Providence St. Mary Medical Center.

A specific motive isn’t clear, although police said Jimenez affiliates with a rival gang.

Jaimes — who has no criminal history — pleaded guilty Sept. 27 to conspiracy to commit drive-by shooting, then was released from jail until his sentencing.

Nagle also is recommending time-served for Jaimes in a deal that includes allowing him to withdraw his guilty plea if he passed a polygraph exam regarding his alleged involvement in the shootings.

In an email message Friday, Nagle told the Union-Bulletin it’s his understanding Jaimes didn’t pass the polygraph. But Nagle hadn’t yet received a copy of the report.

Jaimes’ attorney, William McCool, wouldn’t confirm or deny his client failed.

However, McCool said even if Jaimes didn’t pass, he’s confident his client is innocent. Polygraph results are unreliable and inconsistent, the lawyer said.

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