Five To Face Trial In Teen Shooting
Todd Pittenger - September 23, 2015 4:18 pm
Macio Palacio (facing forward) was found guilty of 1st Degree Murder. File Photo by Tom Dorsey / Salina Journal
Five people accused in the shooting death of a Salina South High School student will face trial. Judge Rene Young issued the ruling late Wednesday afternoon, following a preliminary hearing that lasted nearly three full days. She determined that there is enough evidence to proceed with a trial for each of the accused.
The defendants, each appearing with their own attorney, include:
- 22-year-old Macio Palacio
- 19-year-old Jerome Forbes
- 19-year-old Daniel Sims
- 18-year-old Stephen Gentry
- 17-year-old Andrew Woodring
All five face the the same charges at trial, which include:
- 1st degree murder
- attempted 1st degree murder
- shooting at an occupied vehicle
- conspiracy to commit aggravated battery
Additionally, Woodring faces an obstruction charge.
Each trial will be held separately.
After the judge issued her ruling, Forbes waived his right to an arraignment, and immediately plead not guilty. His trial is scheduled to begin on January 14th, and is expected to last at least a week.
The other four defendants will be arraigned on Wednesday, October 14th. At that time they will enter pleas, and a trial date will be set.
A sixth defendant is also accused in the case, 21-year-old Azucena Garcia-Ferniza. She is facing an obstruction charge, accused of trying to hide the gun that was used in the shooting.
Garcia-Ferniza is currently in federal custody. She was indicted on September 2nd on a federal gun charge. She is charged with one count of unlawful possession of a firearm by an alien illegally in the United States. If convicted in the federal case, she faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison and a fine up to $250,000.
The case stems from the shooting death of 17-year-old Allie Saum.
Allie Saum was shot and killed on May 6th in what prosecutors allege was a case of mistaken identity. They have presented evidence showing that the shooting was prompted by a fight earlier in the evening. A group of people went out to seek revenge. One of them mistakenly identified a male in a pickup that was driving by as being involved in the fight. Shots were fired at the truck as it drove eastbound in the 500 block of Russell. Saum was also in the truck, and was hit in the head.
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