A judge today agreed to allow a 19-year-old murder suspect accused of gunning down a man last year in Indio to represent himself at his upcoming trial.
Steven Lopez is accused in the May 27, 2016, shooting death of 22-year- old Jose Osuna Arriaga, who showed up at John F. Kennedy Hospital in Indio with multiple gunshot wounds following numerous reports of gunshots earlier that night in the 47500 block of Calle Zafiro, according to Indio police Sgt. Daniel Marshall.
Arriaga was airlifted to Desert Regional Medical Center in Palm Springs, where he died. Lopez was arrested four days later in Indio, when police found him behind the wheel of a car on Jefferson Street, near Fred Waring Drive.
Lopez was previously represented by conflict defense lawyers, but filed a Faretta motion last week, which allows defendants to refuse counsel and seek to represent themselves in court.
Riverside County Superior Court Judge Harold W. Hopp granted Lopez’s motion and set a tentative Friday trial date. Lopez remains in custody on $1 million bail.