SANTA ANA (CNS) - A 28-year-old transient pleaded guilty Wednesday and was immediately sentenced to three years -- or time already served in the case - - for beating another homeless man to death in Santa Ana.
Jonathan Ceclio Menjivarlemus pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter with a sentencing enhancement for the personal use of a deadly weapon. He was given credit for 1,096 days in jail awaiting trial.
As part of the negotiated plea deal with prosecutors, a murder charge was dismissed, according to court records.
Menjivarlemus killed 27-year-old Jesus Morales Jimenez on Aug. 26, 2021.
The defendant was originally charged with attempted murder, but it was upgraded to murder when Jimenez died later.
Menjivarlemus attacked Jimenez at about 5 p.m. at 828 N. Raitt St., police said. A witness told police she saw the suspect swinging a pipe up and down as if he were slamming it into the ground, but because her view was obstructed, she couldn't see the victim, police said. When she and a companion went to look at what the suspect was doing, they found the victim and called 911, police said.
Menjivarlemus was arrested several hours later, but he was too high at the time to be questioned, police said. The victim succumbed to his injuries days later.