A 27-year-old El Rio gang member was sentenced Wednesday to 22 years in prison for the shooting death of a fellow gang member in Oxnard three years ago, prosecutors said.
Rudy Mendoza pleaded guilty last month to voluntary manslaughter for the May 28, 2001, death of Anthony Rodriguez. Mendoza, who had a long-running feud with the 30-year-old victim, shot Rodriguez because he believed he had shown Mendoza's family a lack of respect.
Senior Deputy Dist. Atty. Richard Simon said Superior Court Judge Kevin McGee listened to statements from the victim's mother and stepfather before sentencing Mendoza.
"The judge agreed with me that it was a cowardly crime," Simon said, adding that Rodriguez wasn't armed at the time he was shot.