Before witnesses were called to the stand on the tenth day of the People versus John Hernandez Felix, jurors had to be questioned by the judge.
Judge Anthony Villalobos told attorneys that Margarita Felix, the mother of the man accused of murdering Palm Springs Police Officers Jose ‘Gil’ Vega and Lesley Zerebny, possibly communicated with jurors improperly.
Then one by one the twelve jurors were called in followed by the six alternates. Alternate juror number five confirmed Margarita gave her a double thumbs up on her way out of the courtroom.
“I just didn’t think it was right, it made me feel uncomfortable, you’re not supposed to do that,” said alternate juror number five, telling the judge this would not affect her her decision.
Felix’s father Santos was then called up for cross examination.
Santos told the prosecution he believed Officer Zerebny fired the first shot that day, “No one was shooting until she fired the first shot.”
When Assistant District Attorney Michelle Paradise told Santos Officer Zerebny never fired one shot, Santos refused to believe it.
“I can’t give my opinion because you won’t accept it, let’s face reality,” Santos said adding that he did not hold his son responsible for the deaths of Officers Vega and Zerebny.
Then toxicologist Ola Badwardi testified the effects methamphetamine has on the body, saying Felix tested positive for the drug but said she could not testify as to the exact effects the drug had on Felix as this was not an exact science.
Palm Springs Unified School District psychologist Sheryl Deeds then testified Felix had a history of poor school performance and was eventually diagnosed with a learning disability in third grade.