MARTINEZ — Three alleged North Richmond gang members accepted plea deals for manslaughter and robbery charges stemming from the same criminal case, resulting in lengthy prison terms, court records show.
Deanzer Clark pleaded no contest earlier to voluntary manslaughter in the killing of 28-year-old Mario Ambriz Jr, and was sentenced to 15 years and eight months. Joseaphus Goodwin III and Gerald Robinson Jr., meanwhile, received 10 years in prison after pleading no contest to robbing a member of rapper Lil Baby’s entourage in Walnut Creek.
All three men were linked to a North Richmond gang and prosecutors alleged the Ambriz killing was in retaliation for a similar gang-related killing at a Pinole bar in 2014. Goodwin was originally charged with murdering Ambriz as well, but those charges were dropped in the plea deal.
Ambriz was shot and killed June 30, 2018, at the parking lot of the Somewhere Else Bar and Grill, located at 5216 Sobrante Ave. The charging records identify him as a Norteño gang member who was part of a clique centered in San Pablo.
It is the same Norteño subset that David Arce was a member of in February 2014, when he shot and killed 30-year-old Earl Hamilton Jr. outside the now-defunct Green Lantern Bar in Pinole. Hamilton, who was with a group of North Richmond residents, begged for his life as Arce shot him execution-style outside the bar, witnesses testified during Arce’s 2017 trial. Arce was convicted and sentenced to life in prison.
The charging records against Goodwin and Clark made mention of Hamilton’s killing, and say that Clark was with Hamilton at the Green Lantern that night, and was a pallbearer at Hamilton’s funeral. When Ambriz was killed, Goodwin and several other alleged North Richmond gang members were hanging out at the Somewhere Else Bar and Grill, celebrating the birthday of a dead “fellow North Richmond gang member,” who is not identified in court documents. At some point in the evening, they recognized Ambriz as a friend of Arce’s.
Authorities alleged Clark left, returned with a pistol, and fatally shot Ambriz.
The robbery occurred outside Ruth’s Christ Steakhouse in Walnut Creek. Prosecutors say Goodwin and Robinson talked about how he had “hella money” and followed him to the restaurant, where they made their move. He was in town for Lil Baby’s New Generation Tour, which had March shows in Oakland and San Francisco.