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Parole granted for man convicted of 1966 Monterey County killing spree

SALINAS, Calif. (KION-TV)- Monterey County District Attorney Jeannine M. Pacioni said that the California Board of Parole Hearings granted a Youthful Offender and Elder parol to a man convicted of a murder spree that occurred in 1966.

Jose Francisco Velasquez, 24 at the time, was sentenced to seven life sentences for the murders of four people. Pacioni said, Francisco Velasquez was the ring leader and committed these murders with the help of Luis Francisco Pacheco, Jose Luis Galvan, Frank Urrea Gonzales, and Juan Vasquez Garcia.

The first of the murders occurred in July 1966, when inmate Jose Francisco “Pancho” Velasquez, Gonzales and Vasquez Garcia robbed Eduardo Dominguez, fatally stabbed him, and left his body in an irrigation ditch a mile and a half from King City.

Dominguez was an acquaintance of the defendants, said Pacioni. He had been drinking at “Resbalon Bar” in King City and had asked them for a ride home. Gonzales drove and started pretending the car ran out of gas.

An argument took place between Dominguez and the victim and eventually, the victim was stabbed and dragged from the car, said Pacioni. In total, the victim was clubbed and was stabbed multiple times, and robbed of his shoes and wallet which contained $90 in cash.

Galvan was later beaten by the defendants for being dropped off by another friend and having not participated in the mugging, said Pacioni.

Two weeks later on August 7, Velasquez had murdered an unidentified adult male in the same fashion as the victim before. Velasquez wanted money but the man argued he had already bought the men rounds of drinks.

"The defendants put him in their car and left with codefendant Luis Francisco Pacheco driving. However, Pacheco got pulled over and cited for driving without a license and then Gonzales took over the wheel," said Pacioni.

The car stopped and Velasquez opened the door and grabbed John Doe by the head and told Garcia, "Go ahead, and Garcia shot the victim in the head. The victim was thrown into a ditch by Velasquez, Galvan, and Pacheco, said Pacioni.

The victim was then stabbed 55 times by Velasquez and codefendants Garcia and Galvan, and possibly by Pacheco too. His pants, shoes, watch, ring and Saint Christopher medal were stolen. Velasquez then sodomized the body and buried it in a shallow grave, according to the district attorney's office.

Later that evening while driving away from the scene, Gonzales drove at three men walking down the road, victims Manuel Guerrero, Steven Sanchez, and Roberto E. Rodriguez. The defendants asked if they should pick them up or run them over, Velasquez and Garcia wanted to run them down, said Pacioni.

Guerrero was killed on impact, Sanches was hit and knocked into a beet field and Rodriguez was able to get away and ran through some fields. Velasquez and Galvan took off after Rodriguez but were unable to catch him and came back, said Pacioni.

Sanchez was found and hit with a club that had three nails attached by Pacheco, which caused a skull fracture and one nail pierced his brain. Then Velasquez and Galvan joined in and stabbed Sanchez 82 times with a knife, said Pacioni.

His wallet was stolen with $60 inside it and the bodies of Guerrero and Sanchez were found on the edge of a tomato field and beet field on SPreckles Road outside of King City.

Velasquez, now 81 years old, has appeared for parole 19 times and was granted parole back in August of 2018. Then California Governor Jerry Brown reversed the parole. His parole was granted and then reversed by Governor Gavin Newsom two more times.

The Board of Parole found that Mr. Velasquez’s lack of violence and rule breaking while in prison outweighed unsatisfactory answers in the areas of triggers, motivations, coping skills, understanding causative factors, self-awareness, and insight. The family members of John Doe have been active participants in the parole board process and continue to advocate for denial of parole.

Jeannine M. Pacioni, Monterey County District Attorney

Now the Monterey County District Attorney's Office is asking Governor Newsom once again to reverse Velaswuez's parole. They believe he continues to pose an unreasonable risk of harm to the public based on his past actions.

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