Man found guilty in Menlo Park kidnapping

A Fresno man was found guilty today in San Mateo County Superior Court of masterminding a plot to kidnap, rape and murder a female employee in his Menlo Park jewelry store after she resisted his romantic advances.

After eight days of jury trial and four hours of deliberation a jury found Ricardo Zambrano, 38, guilty on charges of conspiracy to commit murder, along with allegations that a principal in the crime was armed with a firearm. He was arrested following the June 2005 kidnapping by gunpoint of a woman who worked at his store inside the Mi Rancho market.

“He [Zambrano] got what was coming to him,” Deputy District Attorney Morris Maya said outside the courtroom today. “The community is a lot safer without him in it.”

Zambrano was convicted of conspiracy to commit rape, kidnapping for the purpose of rape, kidnapping in the commission of a carjacking, threatening a witness and false imprisonment in April, but the jury deadlocked 11-1 on charges of conspiracy to commit murder.

Zambrano’s original sentence was up to life in prison, but he would have been eligible for parole in as few as seven years so a retrial was requested, Maya said. Zambrano will now face a minimum of 25 years in prison before he will be eligible for parole.

“We pursued conspiracy charges because that is absolutely what he did,” Maya said. “He’s not going to pose a danger to anyone for a long time,” he added.

Alfonzo Cuevas Gonzalez, a 40-year-old Fresno man, carried out the kidnapping after being hired by Zambrano. Gonzalez carjacked the victim, a woman in her 20s from Mexico, and drove her to Fresno. At that point the plan went sour when he could not find his accomplices. The victim eventually escaped with the help of a Fresno woman who had foreknowledge of the plan.

A separate jury convicted Gonzalez in March of conspiracy to commit murder, conspiracy to commit rape, kidnapping and felony threats. He was sentenced to 35 years to life in prison June 8.

A sentencing hearing will take place for Zambrano on Jan. 30. He is being held in custody without bail.

— Bay City News

Bay Area NewsLocalPeninsula

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

A Recology employee stands at the comapany’s recycling facility on Pier 96 in 2016. (Jessica Christian/2016 S.F. Examiner)
Nuru scandal: Feds charge second former Recology executive with bribery

Federal authorities have charged a second former Recology executive in connection with… Continue reading

Talika Fletcher, sister of Roger Allen, is consoled at a vigil to honor her brother, who was killed by Daly City Police on April 7, on Wednesday, April 14, 2021. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Supporters march for SF man killed by Daly City police

Struggle over fake gun ends in shooting of 44-year-old Roger Allen, DA says

Syd Mandelbaum created the home run tracker, which revolutionized statistics in major league sports. (Courtesy photo)
Home run tracker, with roots at Candlestick Park, marks 30 years

When Giants first baseman Brandon Belt slugged a solo home run in… Continue reading

Curfews on indoor dining have been lifted as The City continues to reopen business. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
City to allow expanded indoor dining, limited indoor concerts and small conferences

With new COVID-19 cases remaining stable, San Francisco will continue to expand… Continue reading

Johnny Cueto P was the starting pitcher for the San Francisco Giants against the Cinnanti Reds, Wednesday. (Sebastian Miño-Bucheli/Special to the S.F. Examiner)
Cueto leaves with injury as Giants take series from Reds

A latissimus dorsi injury to Johnny Cueto cast a dark cloud over… Continue reading

Most Read