A judge ruled Monday that a gang member who killed a teen-ager to keep him from testifying in the murder trial of a "home boy" must undergo 90 days of evaluation before he is sentenced.
Patrick Ignacio Contreras was a juvenile when he killed 14-year-old Eduardo Samaniego on Aug. 17, 1992. Superior Court Judge George Trammell was required by law to send Contreras, now 19, to the California Youth Authority for the diagnostic evaluation. Contreras, due for sentencing Oct. 14, entered a negotiated plea to a second-degree murder charge after Samaniego's parents refused to allow their daughter to testify. Contreras is expected to get 20 years to life. The defendant in the first case was convicted.