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Long Beach : Teen Arrested in Murder of Girl to Be Tried as an Adult

August 29, 1991

A 17-year-old boy charged in the murder of 12-year-old Anita Rochell Briones will be tried as an adult, a judge ruled this week. The youth is scheduled to be arraigned Friday.

The boy is not to be tried as a teen-ager because of the gravity of the offense and other factors, Long Beach Juvenile Court Judge Anthony Jones ruled Tuesday.

Briones was gunned down in the early morning hours of Aug. 4 in the 300 block of West 15th Street in Long Beach after reportedly pleading for her life. About 14 hours after the murder, police arrested two suspected gang members--the teen-ager and Ruben Guerrero, 18, of Long Beach.

Briones was affiliated with a rival gang, according to Long Beach police.

"It is absolutely callous they would go after a 12-year-old girl because she was affiliated with a rival gang," Assistant Dist. Atty. Debi Canales said.

Guerrero has pleaded not guilty and faces a preliminary hearing next Wednesday. The 17-year-old boy also plans to plead not guilty, said his attorney, Lisa Hovden. "He said he wasn't (at the murder scene). He was at home," Hovden said. "He's not a gang member."

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