Two men accused of killing a grandmother visiting her family in Lodi in 2007 will have to wait a few more weeks to stand trial.
Raymond Mercado, 20, and Daniel Anthony Ramirez, 26, were scheduled to begin preliminary trial hearings Monday, but attorney Russell Humphrey was replaced by John Soldati to represent Ramirez. The trial will be delayed for several weeks while Soldati can familiarize himself with the case, the attorney said Monday afternoon.
“I don’t know any specifics of the case at this point,” Soldati said. “All I know at this point is that I’m now representing Ramirez.”
Soldati did not say why Humphrey was replaced as Ramirez’s attorney. Humphrey could not be reached for comment.
Ramirez and Mercado are accused of killing Georgina Perez, who was visiting her family in Lodi in October 2007. Mercado is accused of shooting into a window of the duplex Perez was in, killing the grandmother of five.
The victim was not the intended target, and the shooter fired blindly into a covered window, police said during the investigation.
Mercado, who was 15 at the time, is charged with murder with a firearm and committing a crime to benefit a street gang. Ramirez is charged with street terrorism, gang activity and being a felon in possession of a firearm. The two were formally charged May 2.
No court date has been officially set for the next appearance.
Contact reporter Jordan Guinn at firstname.lastname@example.org.