A San Jacinto teenager charged in the shooting death of 23-year-old pro bantamweight boxer Eddie Leal in May 2011 pleaded not guilty Monday to murder, a District Attorney's spokesman said.
Manuel Edmundo Guzman Jr., who turned 18 in January, entered a not guilty plea to one count of murder at Southwest Justice Center in Murrieta.
Guzman also denied several enhancements, including that he "intentionally killed the victim while lying in wait," and that the alleged killing was commited during an attempted robbery, according to a complaint filed by prosecutors April 12.
Leal was found deceased with multiple gunshot wounds inside his vehicle early May 30, 2011, in the 1900 block of Roanoke Street, San Jacinto police Sgt. Jim Erickson said in a statement.
Homicide detectives learned Leal had graduated from San Jacinto High School in 2005, and that he was a bantamweight boxer who started his professional career in 2007, Erickson said.
the morning of April 10, 2012, on suspicion of Leal's murder. He was taken into custody at 180 Holsteiner Circle, around the corner from where Leal was found shot to death 10 months earlier, according to inmate records.
Guzman was held without bail at Smith Correctional in Banning before his court appearance Monday, according to inmate records. He remained in custody without bail after entering his not guilty plea.
The city of San Jacinto contracts with the Riverside County Sheriff's Department for its law enforcement services. San Jacinto is south of the San Gorgonio Pass, about 85 miles east of Los Angeles.