LONG BEACH (CNS) - An ex-con pleaded not guilty today in the shooting death of a man who was sitting in a vehicle in Long Beach last month.
Saeed Wheeler, 20, of Anaheim, is charged with one count each of murder, possession of a firearm by a felon and unlawful possession of ammunition.
The charges stem from the Feb. 2 shooting of Nashon Wall, 31, of Signal Hill.
Long Beach police were called that day to the area of Atlantic Avenue and Esther Street at about 6:35 p.m. on reports of a shooting and found Wall lying unresponsive in the roadway next to his parked vehicle. He was taken to a hospital, where he died that day of his wounds.
Homicide detectives determined Wall was approached by ``multiple male subjects,'' one of whom produced a handgun and shot at Wall as he sat in his car, according to the Long Beach Police Department.
The suspects then ran into a nearby apartment complex. The LBPD served a search warrant at the apartment complex and recovered evidence at the scene, but no suspects were taken into custody.
Investigators later identified Wheeler as a suspect and a warrant was issued March 9 for his arrest, but he had already been taken into custody by the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department on an unrelated charge.
``Detectives will continue their efforts to ensure anyone else who participated in this crime is brought to justice,'' Long Beach police said in a statement released earlier this week. ``The motive for the assault and whether a connection exists between the victim and suspect(s) remains under investigation.''
The criminal complaint alleges that Wheeler has a prior conviction from Orange County in March 2021 for carrying a loaded firearm on the person or in a public place.
Anyone with information on the case was urged to call homicide detectives at 562-570-7244, or Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS.