Man arrested in Mexico in connection to 2020 Cathedral City murder

Taylor Martinez

A man wanted as an accessory to a March 2020 murder in Cathedral City has been located and arrested in Mexico.

19-year-old Joel Sanchez of Cathedral City was located in Tijuana, Mexico and has been returned to Riverside County.

Joel Sanchez

Sanchez has been charged as an accessory in connection with the March 23, 2020, murder of Ruben Hernandez at a residence on Avenida La Vista. Cathedral City police were called to the home regarding the shooting of a man and a young girl. Hernandez died at the scene and the girl was taken to a nearby hospital and survived her injuries.

Sanchez is scheduled to be arraigned on April 26 in Indio.

An investigation by Cathedral City police detectives led to the identification of several suspects. The Riverside County Gang Impact Team (GIT), which is supervised by the DA’s Bureau of Investigation, was also
contacted to assist.

The investigation resulted in Sanchez being located in Tijuana, Mexico. GIT members notified the U.S. Marshals Service San Diego International Liaison Unit and on April 20, 2021, Mexican law enforcement authorities arrested Sanchez without incident and released him to U.S. Marshals and GIT members.

Two other defendants have been charged in the case: 24-year-old Jose Agustin Sanchezcasas has been charged with murder and 20-year-old Ethan Joshua Bravo has been charged with attempted murder.

Jose Agustin Sanchezcasas
Ethan Joshua Bravo

Both have their next court appearance on May 13, 2020.

21-year-old Gabriel Hernandez has been charged with murder but is still outstanding and his whereabouts are unknown.

Gabriel Hernandez

Anyone with information about where he may be is asked to contact Cathedral City police at (760) 770-0300.

Sanchez has been charged with aiding Hernandez to avoid and escape arrest and prosecution, with an enhancement of criminal street gang activity. He is also charged with possession of an unregistered firearm – a shotgun, and possession of a stolen firearm – a second shotgun.

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