- Associated Press - Friday, May 23, 2014

FRESNO, Calif. (AP) - Four people are facing charges in the slaying of a Central California raisin farmer who authorities say was shot when he discovered the defendants stripping a stolen truck on his property.

Twenty-two-year-old Jose Canas, who investigators believe was the gunman, and the three other defendants pleaded not guilty on Thursday to murder and vehicle burglary charges in a Fresno County courtroom.

Authorities say the farmer, 38-year-old George Salwasser Jr., discovered the four on his property on May 8. Two of the defendants, Adrian Aceves and Maria Mansanalez, both in their early 20s, were arrested after an SUV they allegedly fled in crashed. Mansanalez’s brother, Fabian, and Canas were arrested the next day.

Attorney Linden Lindahl, who represents Maria Mansanalez, told KFSN-TV (https://abc30.tv/1t31gxV) his client was heartbroken after learning Salwasser had four children.

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Information from: KFSN-TV.

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