SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — Daniel Caldera, 27, appeared in court virtually for arraignment Thursday afternoon and pleaded not guilty to murdering his mother. The judge ordered news crews to blur her face.
San Diego police say Caldera is charged with killing his mother in Pacific Beach earlier this week. She has been identified as Maria Garcia, a woman in her 60s.
Caldera pleaded not guilty to one count of murder, with one allegation of use of a firearm and one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm.
The public defender said in court that Caldera had a psychiatric history and requested that he be examined for psychiatric medication in prison.
In the early hours of Tuesday morning, our ABC 10News Breaking News Tracker arrived at the scene in Pacific Beach where police had launched their investigation.
Police say Garcia was discovered with at least one upper body gunshot wound near Reed Avenue. She was taken to hospital, but did not survive.
Later that morning officers searched the beach for evidence, they say as they continued to investigate they determined her son was the suspect in her murder.
He was arrested and imprisoned for murder that day.
Assistant District Attorney Paige Woodward urged other witnesses to come forward.
“First of all, our office sends our deepest condolences to the family of Miss Garcia, we ask that if anyone has any information on this case, please contact the San Diego Police Department as this is a an ongoing investigation,” Woodward said.
Caldera is due back in court later this month, with a preliminary hearing scheduled for September 29, although the judge said that date could change.
If this case goes to trial and Caldera is found guilty on all counts, he could face 50 years to life behind bars.
. man pleads guilty of having killed mother Pacific Beach