People v. Follings & Mendoza

On May 9, 2019, a jury found defendant Brandon Follings and Pablo Mendoza guilty of first degree murder, gang and gun allegations, with special circumstances of the murder of a witness, Daniel Deltoro.

On February 29, 2008, Joel Perry, Noel Cruz, Raymond Romo, and several other Decoto gang members attempted to rob Juan Gomez and Daniel Donate in Kennedy Park in Union City. Mr. Gomez was killed and Mr. Donate was seriously injured. The case went cold for several years until Decoto gang member, Daniel Deltoro, and a friend of Perry, Cruz and Romo came forward and provided information about the robbery/murder. Mr. Deltoro provided information to the Union City Police department leading to the arrest of his fellow gang members. He also testified against Perry at his preliminary hearing and trial. The Decoto gang placed him on their “hit list.” Mr. Deltoro’s cooperation lead to convictions four Decoto gang members. The actual shooter, Perry was convicted at trial of first degree murder, attempted murder, second degree robbery, assault with a firearm, and the gang allegations against him were found to be true. Mr. Perry’s case was prosecuted by DDA Elgin Lowe.

On July 19, 2017, victim Daniel Deltoro was pushing his three month old son in Cherryland District in Hayward, CA. Defendant Valerie Boden driving her family’s Toyota Camry with Follings, a Northside Oakland/Bushrod gang member, and Mendoza, an active Norteño/Decoto gang member were her passengers. Everyone in the vehicle noticed Deltoro. Mendoza made a commit to the others that Deltoro was a “Snitch” who had sent his friend away for life. Follings responded that he had a friend doing “50-years” in prison. The group agreed to attack Mr. Deltoro. Video surveillance from the area captured the suspect Toyota Camry circling the block and passing by Mr. Deltoro and his son several times.

At approximately 2:46 pm, Mr. Deltoro and his son reached the 240 block of Willow Avenue, Mendoza jumped out of the Camry with a white t-shirt covering his face, black socks on his hands, and holding a semi-automatic firearm. Mendoza attempted to fire the weapon several times but it failed. The two men wrestle on the ground over the gun as Defendant Follings jumped from the car with his own semi-automatic pistol. Follings fired six times into Mr. Deltoro’s body killing him. A witness from the scene was able to capture a partial license plate number from Boden’s vehicle. This information lead to her arrest by the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office. Subsequent investigation led to the arrest of both Follings and Mendoza. Both men went to trial and were convicted of all charges.

The case was heard in front of the honorable Judge Kevin Murphy. The defense attorneys were Mr. D. Stallworth for Mendoza and Mr. T. Bequette for Follings.

The case was prosecuted by DDA Jimmie Wilson and DA inspector Eric Karsseboom. The superior investigation was completed by almost every member of Alameda County Sheriff’s Office, Alameda County Crime Lab, and the Union City Police Department. Specifically like to thank, ACSO Detectives Nicholas Paxton, Kurtis Imperial, Anthony Moschetti, Ryan Swetavage, Rosario Lopez, and Union City Sgt. Andrew Gannam.

Posted on May 10, 2019