Spring Valley man pleads not guilty on murder charges

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A Spring Valley man, Osvaldo Lopez, 35, has pleaded not guilty to killing a National City father on Nov. 14, and a preliminary hearing date will be set on Dec. 8.

Ricardo Sales, 30, was shot multiple times and killed at 6 p.m. at the intersection of Donax Avenue and Florence Street in Imperial Beach. He is the father of two children.

A Spring Valley man, Osvaldo Lopez, 35, has pleaded not guilty to killing a National City father on Nov. 14, and a preliminary hearing date will be set on Dec. 8.

Ricardo Sales, 30, was shot multiple times and killed at 6 p.m. at the intersection of Donax Avenue and Florence Street in Imperial Beach. He is the father of two children.

Sheriff’s deputies and members of the San Diego County Regional Fugitive Task Force in the 9000 block of Towne Center Drive in San Diego arrested Lopez. The sheriff’s department said the slaying was not gang related and it is unclear if Lopez knew Sales.

A Chula Vista Superior Court judge set $1 million bail and Lopez remains in the central jail.

“Chameleon Bandit ordered to stand trial

An El Cajon bank robber, known as the “Chameleon Bandit,” has been ordered to stand trial in holding up six banks. His nickname came from changes in his appearance in later bank robberies. 

Eight tellers, a customer, and three police officers were witnesses in the 2-day preliminary hearing of Darius Demon Lake, 28, and a second man, Bryan Lee Barkely, 24, both of El Cajon. Barkely, who is also known as Bryan Barkley, is accused of committing several other hold-ups with Lake.

Both men will appear Nov. 30 in San Diego Superior Court to set a trial date. Judge Lisa Schall ordered them to stand trial on all counts on Nov. 15.

The “Chameleon Bandit” wore a camouflage baseball cap, sunglasses, a heavy dark winter jacket with light colored shorts, dark socks with white colored shoes at one hold-up, according to court records. Two days later, Lake allegedly robbed a Navy Federal Credit Union in San Marcos and wore a black beanie, sunglasses, a black long sleeve shirt and baggy jeans, a court document says.

When Lake allegedly robbed a Mission Federal Credit Union in El Cajon on Oct. 19, the robber wore a white shirt, a black jacket with light colored stripes, gray shorts, and white sports type shoes. The “Chameleon Bandit” also profanities in making demands to tellers and threatened to kill one teller in the Bank of the West branch in El Cajon on Oct. 5.

When the bandit entered the U.S. Bank at 2755 Navajo Road in El Cajon on Oct. 10, he demanded more money after she gave him $4,703, which was all she had in her drawer. He then left. The robber wore a black rag on his head with a silver chain around his neck and a white button up short sleeve shirt with a black long sleeve undershirt and dark pants.

The haul from all six-bank robberies comes to $16,801. In the Mission Federal Credit Union hold-up, a customer lost $300 in cash and his debit card while he was standing in line. A bank in Point Loma was robbed on Oct. 12.

Lake is also facing a third strike sentence as he was convicted in U.S. District Court in San Diego of three bank robberies. Barkely has been convicted of an assault charge previously, court records say.

El Cajon Police arrested Barkely on Oct. 29 and Lake on Oct. 30. Both pleaded not guilty at the start of their preliminary hearing.

Lake’s bail figure is $500,000 while Barkely’s bail is $250,000 and both remain in jail.

Lakeside man sentenced in La Mesa hatchet robbery

A Lakeside man who used a hatchet to rob a La Mesa business has been sentenced to one year in jail, but is eligible to serve part of his sentence at a residential rehabilitation facility.

Randall John Lee, 24, pleaded guilty to robbing the Best Buy, at 8401 Fetcher Parkway, in La Mesa, on Feb. 28 and used a hatchet to scare a loss prevention employee. Lee had tried to conceal a camera on his person and when confronted, he said, “Want to get hit with a hatchet?”

El Cajon Superior Court Judge Dan Lamborn ordered Lee to pay $349.99 to the Best Buy store. Lamborn also ordered him to pay $47.88 for items stolen at a Wal-Mart store in Santee. On terms of three years probation, Lee agreed to stay out of all Best Buy and Wal-Mart stores.

When Lee started to leave the Wal-Mart store on March 12, he pulled a BB gun from a backpack and fired multiple BB rounds, which hit an employee in the shoulder, according to a Crime Stoppers report. 

Lee had been free on $150,000 bond, but went into custody at the sentencing and was given credits of 48 days in jail. He was fined $1,344, according to court records.

The sheriff’s department said his projected release is set for April 1, 2018 if he is not released to the rehab facility. 

An assault charge involving the hatchet was dismissed as well as two robbery charges in a March 12 incident at Wal-Mart after Lee pleaded guilty to robbery of the Best Buy store.  He could have received six years in state prison.

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