Crime

Nampa teen, tried as adult, found guilty of murder in killing of fellow 16-year-old

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A jury deliberated for not even three hours Wednesday afternoon before finding a Nampa teenager guilty of murder in the killing of a fellow 16-year-old last year.

Juan Menchaca Olvera, of Nampa, was charged with first-degree murder and robbery in the shooting of 16-year-old Roberto “Robert” Angel Gomez. He was tried as an adult despite his age, and he was found guilty on both charges, Canyon County spokesman Joe Decker told the Idaho Statesman.

He faces up to life in prison.

Gomez was shot multiple times on Sept. 25, 2018, outside a Nampa home near 11th Avenue North and Powell Avenue.

Canyon County jurors began deliberations Wednesday after attorneys made closing arguments that followed a weeklong trial. Third Judicial District Judge George Southworth presided.

Menchaca Olvera had multiple co-defendants in the case, but he was the only suspect still charged with murder.

Menchaca Olvera, as well as four adults — including his mother, Maribel Menchaca — and three other juveniles were charged in the case. Since then, Maribel Menchaca’s charges have been dismissed, but in April the Canyon County Prosecutor’s Office said it plans to refile against her.

Jose M. Menchaca, 39, who is Menchaca Olvera’s uncle, was accused of going to the location of the shooting with Menchaca Olvera. Jose M. Menchaca has also been accused of beating up Gomez before the teen was shot. He is charged on suspicion of aiding and abetting robbery and has pleaded not guilty.

The other suspects accused in connection to Gomez’s death are:

  • Elizabeth Esparza, 28, of Caldwell — accessory to first-degree murder, aiding and abetting robbery, and perjury. She’s pleaded not guilty.

  • Olivia Hernandez-Santana, 35, of Caldwell — accessory to first-degree murder, intimidation of a witness and perjury. She’s pleaded not guilty.

  • Jose A. Menchaca, 17, of Nampa — pleaded guilty to perjury on May 14 and will be sentenced on Aug. 16.

  • Isaac Bernal, 16, of Nampa — accessory to first-degree murder, and aiding and abetting robbery. He’s pleaded not guilty.

  • Gabriel Hernandez Olivo, 16, of Caldwell — pleaded guilty on May 8 to accessory to a felony, intimidation of a witness and evidence destruction. He will be sentenced Sept. 10.
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