Details of the person of interest have been provided. P.O.I. has an outstanding warrant for robbery and assault with a deadly weapon. | Photo By: RIVERSIDE COUNTY SHERIFF


MECCA, Calif. — The Riverside Sheriff’s Central Homicide Unit investigators have continued to investigate the murder of  17-year-old Francisco Ramirez of Mecca. A person of interest in the homicide has now been identified as David Espinoza, a 20-year-old resident of Mecca. Espinoza’s whereabouts are currently unknown, and he is wanted on an outstanding felony warrant for an unrelated robbery and assault with a deadly weapon case.


On March 25, 2024, at 12:05 a.m., deputies were dispatched to the 71000 block of Miramar Drive, Mecca, in reference to an assault with a deadly weapon. During their investigation, deputies located evidence of a shooting in the 99000 block of Via Costa Brava but did not locate a victim or suspect. 

Thermal Sheriff’s Station investigators assumed the investigation. As the investigation continued, information developed that led investigators to a deceased male in the area of Sea View Way and 72nd Avenue, less than one mile from the initial crime scene. This deceased male is believed to be connected to the original assault with a deadly weapon call.

Based on the circumstances, the scene was secured and the Riverside Sheriff’s Central Homicide Unit was requested to respond to the scene where they assumed the investigation. For now, the victim’s identity is being withheld at this time pending positive identification and notification to next-of-kin.

Due to the on-going investigation, no additional information has been released at this time. If anyone has information regarding this investigation, they are encouraged to call Master Investigator R. Deanne of the Central Homicide Unit at 951–955–2777 or Investigator P. Lorton of the Thermal Sheriff’s Station at 760–863–8990.

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