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Palm Springs quadruple murder re-trial: investigator who arrested defendant testifies

In the Palm Springs quadruple murder re-trial, Thursday a family friend of the defendant took the stand.

Jose Larin Garcia is accused of murdering four people in Palm Springs in 2019. His first trial ended earlier this year with a deadlocked jury.

Joseph Beaver said Larin Garcia showed up at his Palm Springs home in the dark early morning hours the day after the murders. He was scraped up and wearing hospital scrubs. The jury previously saw surveillance video of Larin Garcia running from his Desert Regional Medical Center room without being discharged.

Beaver brought Larin Garcia to the bus station to go to Florida to see his family and "start over," he testified.

Beaver brought a cross-country bus ticket under the fake name "Joseph Brownin." He retrieved clothes from Larin Garcia's home and shoes from his car. Beaver said he had no knowledge that four people had been murdered, telling police at the time if he had known, he wouldn't have helped anyone in that situation.

Riverside County District Attorney Investigator Charles Cervello told the jury his team staked out Larin Garcia's house looking for leads after the murders.

They questioned his mother and she allowed Cervello inside, he said.

In Larin Garcia's room, Cervello saw an unspent 9mm bullet.

A transcript of Larin Garcia's voice message to his mother from the hospital showed him saying through stammers, "Hey mama… I think they’re going to arrest me… I have to talk to a lawyer…"

Cervello's team later arrested Larin Garcia at the bus stop around 7 that night. He had a backpack and $160 cash. He was unarmed, and had shaved his head.

Wednesday, Larin Garcia's mother took the stand, revealing he called her the night of the murders and she brought him clothes and a cell phone after he ran from the hospital.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QDDuYWbBW3M

A medical examiner also testified victims Yuliana Garcia and Carlos Campos Rivera were killed instantly by gunshot wounds to the head.

News Channel 3's Jake Ingrassia is tracking the latest developments from court: follow along here.

BACKGROUND:

Jose Larin Garcia, a Cathedral City man, is accused of killing four people (ages 17-25): Carlos Campos, Jacob Montgomery, Yuliana Garcia and Juan Duarte Raya nearly four years ago.

Jose Larin Garcia, 23

The four victims were all found shot and killed on the night of February 3rd, 2019.

Three of the victims were found inside a car that crashed at Sunny Dunes and El Placer roads. The fourth victim was discovered in the street on Canon Dr. few blocks away.

When police arrived on scene, they found Larin Garcia hiding under a truck. They say he appeared intoxicated and covered in blood. 

Larin Garcia was taken to Desert Regional Medical Center for treatment. Security footage shows him running from the hospital later that night.

Detectives have testified he then went to a friend’s house who he had buy him a one-way bus ticket to Florida using a fake name. Prosecutors say he was preparing to flee – shaving his head and beard to change his appearance. He was arrested waiting at the bus stop.  

Larin Garcia is charged with four counts of murder. He also faces a special-circumstance allegation of committing multiple murders, opening him to the death penalty if convicted. 

WEEK 2 IN COURT:

The jury heard from a police investigator and a friend of some of the victims.

A hospital nurse who treated Larin Garcia as a trauma patient the night of the murders testified he ran from the emergency department.

A Palm Springs police officer gave testimony key to the defense argument that another man carried out the shootings. 

The jury was brought on-location to the scene of the crimes.

WEEK 1 IN COURT:

During opening statements, prosecutor and Deputy District Attorney Samantha Paixao asked the jury to hold Larin Garcia responsible for the four lives she said he stole.https://youtube.com/embed/qTPiv4vZAoc

Defense attorney John Patrick Dolan argued that another man, John Olvera, was responsible for the murders.

The jury heard from some of the first people on scene after the murders, including neighbors who saw the dead bodies and the police officer who first made contact with the suspect.

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Jake Ingrassia

Joining News Channel 3 and CBS Local 2 as a reporter, Jake is excited to be launching his broadcasting career here in the desert. Learn more about Jake here.

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