Oceano gang members facing life in prison for murder

Nathaniel Jara, Gabriel Garay, and Robert Garay


San Luis Obispo District Attorney Dan Dow announced today his decision to seek life in prison without the possibility of parole for the three gang members who allegedly murdered Daniel Fuentes last year.

Shortly after 12 p.m. on April 2, the gang members were driving on the 2200 block of Beach Street in Oceano when they spotted Fuentes outside his home. The three suspects allegedly got out of the car and argued with Fuentes. Robert Garay then shot Fuentes as he tried to escape.

Following the shooting, Fuentes went to a neighbor’s home, knocked on the door, told residents inside that he had been shot, and then died.

On Aug. 16, SLO County sheriff detectives arrested Nathaniel Jara, 21, Robert Garay, 28, and his brother Gabriel Garay, 21, for murder. During their investigation, detectives discovered the suspects killed Fuentes under the direction of Oceano 13, a criminal street gang.

On Aug. 19, prosecutors charged the three suspects with the premeditated murder of Fuentes. In addition, a special circumstance is alleged that the three defendants were active participants in a criminal street gang and committed the murder to further the activities of the criminal street gang.

“The decision in this case to seek life in prison without the possibility of parole, rather than the death penalty, was made after careful consideration of all facts related to the case and the background of the defendants,” according to prosecutors. “Additionally, the District Attorney consulted with surviving family members of the victim Daniel Fuentes and the involved investigative personnel.”