MARTINEZ -- A West Contra Costa County gang member was sentenced Friday to more than 18 years in state prison for hitting a homeless man with a car while fleeing a Richmond street robbery.
Jesus Jose Canela, 25, had been paroled from prison for a week when on May 8, 2010, he and a fellow gang member used a replica gun to rob a man of his cell phone at 23rd Street and Dunn Avenue in Richmond, deputy district attorney Jill Henderson said.
When police tried to stop Canela shortly after the robbery, he ran numerous stop signs and at least five red lights before striking a homeless man who was pushing a shopping cart of recyclables through a crosswalk at Barrett Avenue and 19th Street. The victim was hospitalized with a fractured spine and tibia, and facial cuts so deep you could see his skull, Henderson said.
Canela continued driving the wrong way down 23rd Street before he was apprehended "kicking and screaming," Henderson said.
A jury on May 27 convicted Canela of robbery for the benefit of a gang, hit-and-run resulting in great bodily injury, evading police, street terrorism, resisting arrest, and leaving the scene of an injury accident.
Contact Malaika Fraley at 925-234-1684. Follow her at Twitter.com/malaikafraley.