Two of three suspects enter pleas in burglary where shots fired as Willmar police arrive
WILLMAR -- Two of the three suspects involved in a home burglary last fall where responding Willmar police officers encountered gun fire entered pleas in district court today.
Arcadio Salinas, Jr., 23, of Willmar, offered an Alford plea to a charge of aiding and abetting an attempted robbery, first degree during a district court appearance in Willmar this morning.
Jesus Trevino, 33, of Willmar, formerly of Gilbert, Ariz,, pleaded guilty to first degree, burglary with assault on a person in a building during a district court appearance in Willmar this afternoon.
Charges of attempted first degree murder of a police officer were dismissed against both defendants. Also, five other burglary charges were dismissed against Trevino.
The plea agreements make it apparent that prosecutors believe the third defendant in the case, Leroy Diaz Evans, 26, of Willmar, is alone responsible for firing shots from a Malibu as police arrived. Evans is scheduled for a jury trial beginning Feb. 11.
One bullet struck the headlight of a squad car and three others penetrated a nearby home during the incident on Sept. 15. The officer in the struck squad car said he believed that gun fire was directed at him, according to the complaints filed in the cases.
Trevino testified that he wore a disguise and carried a silver, .357 caliber hand gun when he entered a residence on the 800 block of Southeast Second Street. He was intending to rob a man living in an apartment there, he told the court. He admitted striking the man with the handle of the gun.
In entering an Alford plea, Salinas said he believed there was sufficient evidence for a jury to conclude that he knew what was going on as he waited in the car for Trevino and Evans.
Sentencing is scheduled March 7 for Salinas and March 28 for Trevino. Both have prior criminal histories and both are expected to serve prison time for their offenses.
Both remain in custody.