OGDEN — An Ogden man entered not guilty pleas Tuesday to charges of attempted murder and kidnapping after a shooting occurred outside of the Newgate Mall in September.
Octavio Estrada-Mendez, 21, was present in court alongside his attorney, Martin Gravis.
The brief hearing saw Estrada-Mendez waive his right to a preliminary hearing and enter not guilty pleas to all charges levied against him.
Gravis told Judge Noel Hyde that a plea deal has been offered by prosecutors, but he and his client had not yet made a decision whether to accept. According to Gravis, prosecutors have told the defense that they can either accept the plea deal or Estrada-Mendez’s case could be sent to the U.S. Attorney’s Office to be screened for federal charges.
Gravis did not say during the Tuesday hearing what the plea deal may include or whether he and his client would accept the deal.
In total, Estrada-Mendez is charged with one count of attempted murder, a first-degree felony; two counts of possession of a controlled substance with intent to distribute, one a first-degree felony and the other a second-degree felony; possession of a dangerous weapon by a restricted person, a second-degree felony; failure to stop at the command of police, a third-degree felony; causing or permitting a child to be exposed to a controlled substance, a third-degree felony; and other misdemeanor charges.
On Sept. 29, 2018, police were called to 3651 Wall Ave. where a male in his 20s had been shot. The victim and Estrada-Mendez were at the Newgate Mall when they were involved in an altercation, according to the probable cause statement. The two decided to “take it outside” and left the mall separately with their girlfriends, according to a probable cause statement.
The victim and his girlfriend were approaching their car when Mendez allegedly approached and fired one shot from a handgun, hitting the victim in the upper left torso.
Mendez’s girlfriend was putting their son into his car seat in their truck when she heard the shot, court documents say. Mendez allegedly jumped into the truck, said “I’m sorry,” and quickly drove away.
A South Ogden police officer who was in the area and heard the gunshot saw the truck leaving at a high rate of speed and began to pursue him. Police were later able to take Estrada-Mendez into custody, and they found a handgun and a black backpack containing 217 grams of marijuana, 31 grams of methamphetamine, a digital scale, and packaging materials.
Estrada-Mendez was on probation at the time of his September arrest, according to court records.
Estrada-Mendez is being held without bail at the Weber County Jail. His next court appearance is scheduled for Feb. 12 in Ogden’s 2nd District Court.