News Releases

February 24, 2021: Man Pleads to Murder for Killings in Covina, Azusa

Ricardo Santiago, Public Information Officer
(213) 257-2000

Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón announced today that a Long Beach man pleaded guilty to fatally shooting two people, including his estranged wife, in a three-month span in 2018. 

“Given the senseless and brazen crimes committed by Miguel Angel Prieto, he will be sentenced to two consecutive life sentences,” District Attorney Gascón said. 

Prieto (dob 11/14/74) entered the pleas to one count each of first-degree murder and second-degree murder and two counts of attempted murder. 

Sentencing is scheduled on March 3 in Department T of the Los Angeles County Superior Court, Pomona Branch. 

On April 11, 2018, Prieto went to his estranged wife’s Covina home, shot her several times, then fled the area. Authorities were called and Maria Perez, 42, was pronounced dead.

Several hours after the incident, Prieto was located in Long Beach and arrested in connection with Perez’s killing, prosecutors said. 

During the homicide investigation, law enforcement discovered Prieto was in Azusa on Feb. 9, 2018 when he mistook a man he believed was Perez’s boyfriend. The man was sitting with a woman in a car when Prieto walked up to the pair, spoke to them and later shot them, prosecutors added. 

The woman, Rocio Sandoval, 38, succumbed to her injuries. 

Prieto also was involved in a third shooting on April 7, 2018, prosecutors said. The defendant visited Perez’s uncle’s restaurant in Long Beach and shot at a woman. 

Case KA117890 was investigated by the Covina, Azusa and Long Beach police departments and the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.