Sentencing for former RCC student is postponed

By Samantha Bartholomew

The sentencing of former Riverside City College student Enrique Marquez Jr., convicted of purchasing the weapons used in the Dec. 2, 2015, San Bernardino shooting, was postponed Nov. 2.

The sentencing in U.S. District Court in Riverside had been originally scheduled for Nov. 6. The hearing is now scheduled for Feb. 26, 2018.

Marquez plead guilty to obtaining and illegally providing rifles to husband and wife Syed Rizwan Farook and Tashfeen Malik, who would later use those weapons during the San Bernardino attack that would kill 14 people and wound 22 others.

According to the FBI affidavit, Marquez called local law enforcement the day after the shooting and told them that the gun Farook used had belonged to him. Marquez was then questioned for 10 days, during which he admitted his role in plots to attack RCC and motorists on the 91 freeway.

Facing a sentence of 50 years to life in federal prison, Marquez accepted a plea agreement Feb. 16 that changed his potential sentence to 25 years to life and a fine of $500,000.

This is not the first time that Marquez’s hearing has been rescheduled.

The initial court date was Aug. 21, but both the defense and the prosecution requested additional time.

According to court documents, Marquez claimed to need more time to prepare his statement and the prosecution said they might include a report from an expert witness that wouldn’t be able to finish their testimony before Sept. 15. Judge Jesus G. Bernal approved the request.

The recent rescheduling is cited as being due to federal prosecutors announced plans to have a terrorism expert attend the sentencing and that defense attorneys might decide to invite their own expert to testify.

An additional cause for the postponement was that the government recently said there were additional reports available for review and the defense attorneys claimed to need more time to properly examine them.

Authorities say Marquez had no knowledge of or role in the 2015 San Bernardino attack.

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