Rodriguez found guilty of second-degree murder

VENTURA, California – District Attorney Gregory D. Totten announced today that after a two-week jury trial, Jose Luis Rodriguez (DOB 8/4/87), of Oxnard, was found guilty of second-degree murder, driving under the influence of alcohol causing injury, and driving with a revoked or suspended license. The jury also found true the special allegation that the defendant drove with a blood alcohol content of .15 or higher.

The crimes took place in the early morning of June 14, 2013, when Rodriguez left a Ventura bar and drove at speeds in excess of 120 miles per hour southbound on Victoria Avenue. Rodriguez lost control of his car into an agricultural field south of Olivas Park Drive. The crash resulted in the death of Esmeralda Bello, and injury to Sergio Lemus-Martinez, both passengers in Rodriguez’s car.

Sentencing for Rodriguez is scheduled for January 18, 2017, at 8:30 a.m. in courtroom 46 of the Ventura Superior Court, County of Ventura. Rodriquez faces a maximum sentence of 18 years to life in state prison.