DA not to seek death penalty for Freddy Hernandez in Regollar murder

June 23, 2000
Santa Paula News
The Ventura County District Attorney has announced that a Santa Paula gang member won’t be facing the death penalty in the trial for the murder of an area storekeeper. Alfredo “Freddy” Hernandez, 23, now faces a maximum penalty of life in prison without parole if convicted for the June 2, 1998 murder of Mirna Regollar, a 25-year-old resident of Oxnard who was shot during a daylight robbery in the family-owned Junior’s Market on Oak Street on the north side of the city.Regollar was shot by two different guns during the robbery attempt, once in the back and in the head after the suspects - Hernandez and 21-year-old Jose “Pepe” Castillo - saw her hit a silent alarm.The mother of two young children and a nursing student, Regollar died within hours of being shot. . .detectives found the money in the store undisturbed.Witnesses saw two young men flee the area but they seemingly disappeared: it wasn’t until last year the Santa Paula Police detectives cracked the case, including uncovering information that Castillo had been involved in the 1993 sidewalk murder of 17-year-old Jesse Strobel of Ventura.Just 15 at the time of the Strobel slaying, Castillo later admitted his guilt in a juvenile court and later confessed to his role in the Regollar murder in exchange for a sentence of life in prison without parole.
Hernandez has been charged with murder and attempted robbery including two special circumstances: that the murder took place during the commission of a robbery and that the murder took place during the commission of a burglary. It is also alleged that Hernandez personally used a firearm during the commission of the special circumstances crimes, itself a special circumstance.Regollar’s heartbroken family said early on that based on their religious convictions that they did not wish execution for her murderer.Hernandez’s trial is set for September 11.

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