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Trial Set in Los Banos Homicide Case

MERCED - A trial was scheduled Thursday for a man charged with killing a Los Banos resident in 2010.

Carlos Anthony Gallegos, 29, of Salinas, has pleaded not guilty to to murder and carjacking in the death of Jorge Luis Zamora.

Zamora, 54, was found shot dead June 29, 2010, in his apartment on I Street in Los Banos. Police discovered the body after neighbors reported an odor coming from his home, investigators said.

Authorities have not commented on a motive for the shooting.

Walter Wall, the Merced County district attorney prosecuting the case, said jury questionnaires will be mailed Oct. 28, with jury selection beginning Nov. 4.

Gallegos’ attorney, Jeffrey Tenenbaum, said his client maintains he is not guilty. “He’s waiting a long time for his jury trial, and he’s looking forward to his day in court,” Tenenbaum said.

The co-defendant in the case, Yadira Garcia Cervantes, 33, of Los Banos, pleaded no contest last year to a single felony count of robbery in connection with the case, officials confirmed previously.

Investigators said Zamora’s wallet, keys and vehicle were missing from the home. Detectives reportedly tracked the missing vehicle to Gallegos’ home in Salinas, where they also recovered some property allegedly belonging to Zamora.

Witnesses told police Gallegos and Cervantes had been seen driving Zamora’s vehicle in the days following the victim’s death, authorities reported.

Gallegos remains in custody without bail at the Merced County jail.

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