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The Latest: Not guilty plea in California police killings

October 13, 2016 - 4:10 PM

RIVERSIDE, Calif. - The Latest on the initial court appearance of a man charged with killing two Palm Springs police officers. (all times local):

4 p.m.

A California man has pleaded not guilty to the murder of two Palm Springs police officers and several other felonies.

John Hernandez Felix entered the pleas Thursday in a Riverside County courtroom.

Felix's public defender Michael Rowlands for an arraignment delay so his client could undergo a psychological exam.

Superior Court Judge Victoria Cameron denied the request but said she would allow Felix to change his plea after the exam. It will be held before his next court appearance.

Felix also pleaded not guilty to attempted murder and weapons charges. He spoke only to enter the plea and answer yes-or-no questions. He was ordered held without bail.

The courtroom was packed with victims' family members and police officers.

Felix is accused of killing Officers Jose "Gil" Gilbert Vega and Lesley Zerebny, who came to his family home on a domestic disturbance call Saturday.


1 a.m.

A gang member who prosecutors say targeted, ambushed and killed two Palm Springs police officers is scheduled to appear in court.

Arraignment on first-degree murder and many other charges is scheduled Thursday for 26-year-old John Hernandez Felix in Indio, California.

Prosecutors say an attorney is being assigned to Felix.

The district attorney said Wednesday that Felix was prepared to attack the officers who responded to a 911 call from his family's home on Saturday.

Prosecutors say he wore body armour and used armour-piercing ammunition when he opened fire with an AR-15 rifle on the police who came to the door.

Felix faces special-circumstance allegations that make him eligible for the death penalty, but prosecutors haven't decided whether to seek it.

News from © The Associated Press, 2016
The Associated Press

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