Gang Members Accused in Slaying of Security Guard Ordered to Stand Trial

Alpha Project

Gang Members Accused in Slaying of Security Guard Ordered to Stand Trial

By City News Service o Published May 10, 2021 o Updated on May 10, 2021 at 8:17 pm

Alpha Project/NBC 7

Two suspected gang members accused in the shooting death of a security guard outside an East Village homeless shelter were ordered to stand trial. Floyd Garrett, 48, and Johnny Hill, 41, are both charged with murder in the Dec.

28, 2019, slaying of Ernest Lee Buchanan, a 44-year-old guard at the Alpha Project tent shelter at 1700 Imperial Ave.

Download our NBC 7 mobile app for iOS or Android to get alerts for local breaking news and weather.

Garrett was arrested Jan.

4, 2020, in Phoenix, Arizona, while Hill was arrested the following day in San Diego.

> Announcer: NBC7 NEWS AT 11:00 STARTS NOW. >> IT WAS A SENSELESS ACT THAT SHOULD HAVE NEVER HAPPENED. >> WE ARE HEARING TONIGHT FOR THE FIRST TIME FROM THE WIFE OF THE UNARMED SECURITY GUARD WHO WAS SHOT AND KILLED AT A HOMELESS SHELTER IN THE EAST VILLAGE OVER THE WEEKEND. EARNEST BUCHANAN DIED ON THE JOB WHILE KEEPING WATCH IN FRONT OF THE TEMPORARY SHELTER RUN BY ALPHA PROJECT ON IMPERIAL AVENUE.

THANKS FOR BEING WITH US. I’M CATHERINE GAR A A. >> I’M MARK MULL EN. WE SPOKE WITH FAMILY MEMBERS EARLIER TONIGHT. >> Reporter: HIS MEMORY HAS BROUGHT MORE THAN A HUNDRED, FRIENDS, COWORKERS, FAMILY HERE AT THE ALPHA PROEQUITY JUDGE.

THEY SPILLED OUT ONTO IMPERIAL AVENUE. u266a I WANT JESUS — >> Reporter: WHO KILLED ERNIE BUCHANAN? HIS WIFE SHIRLEY DOESN’T KNOW THE NAME, BUT SHE IS CERTAIN OF THIS. >> SOMEBODY WHO DIDN’T KNOW HIM. SOMEBODY ACTUALLY DIDN’T KNOW HIM, HAD NO IDEA HE WAS THE BEST IN THE MAN IN THE WORLD TAKEN FROM US. >> Reporter: BUCHANAN IS SURVIVED BY SIX CHILDREN AND THREE GRANDCHILDREN.

SHELLY IS HOLDING BRYCE. HE’S THE YOUNGEST. >> HE WAS A BEAUTIFUL MAN. HE TOOK CARE OF ALL HIS KIDS, HE TOOK CARE OF FAMILY, LOVED ONES. >> Reporter: BUCHANAN WAS SHOT SEVERAL TIMES OUT IN FRONT OF THE TEMPORARY HOMELESS SHELTER SUNDAY NIGHT.

THE SHOOTER GOT AWAY. HE WAS PART OF THE SECURITY PROJECT THAT RAN THE SHELTER. >> HE WAS PART OF THE COMMUNITY. HE WAS INVOLVED IN THE COMMUNITY HERE.

HE SPENT HIS LIFE HERE. >> Reporter: SO MANY PEOPLE SHOWED UP TO SHARE A HUG AND KIND WORDS AND LIGHT A CANDLE IN REMEMBRANCE. SHELI SAID SHE CAN’T DESCRIBE THE FEELING. >> EVERYTHING, NO WORDS. IT MEANS EVERYTHING.

SANU BUCHANAN WAS UNARMED. AND WHILE ALPHA PROJECT PRESIDENT BOB McILROY AND THE POLICE DEPARTMENT AGREED, THE SHELTER WAS NOT THE TARGET. McILROY SAYS MORE OF A POLICE PRESENCE COULD HELP. >> MAYBE IF WE WOULD HAVE HAD SOMEBODY HERE THAT COULD FIGHT BACK, MAYBE THAT WOULDN’T HAVE HAPPENED.

I DON’T KNOW. I HAVEN’T SLEPT FOR THREE DAYS BECAUSE THAT’S ALL I’M THINKING ABOUT, WHAT IF, WHAT IF, WHAT IF. >> Reporter: SAN DIEGO POLICE ARE OFFERING FEW DETAILS ABOUT THIS INVESTIGATION. McILROY SAYS AFTER SPEAKING WITH DETECTIVES, HE’S SATISFIED THAT THEY’RE ON THE TRAIL OF WHO IS RESPONSIBLE FOR THIS DEATH.

DOWNTOWN, I’M DAVE SUMMERS, NBC7. >> SAN DIEGO POLICE TOLD NBC7 THEY MAINTAIN A CONSISTENT PRESENCE IN THAT PART OF DOWNTOWN AND THE CITY","video_id":"1664858179666_196","video_length":"146213","video_provider":"mpx","alleypack_schedule_unpublish":"","feed_remote_id":"mpx_1664858179666","feed_thumbnail_url":""}” data-livestream=”false” data-title=”Wife, Friends Honor Slain Alpha Project Security Guard at Vigil” data-vidc data-vidurl=”https://www.nbcsandiego.com/news/local/wife-friends-honor-slain-alpha-project-security-guard-at-vigil/2236830/” data-islead=”false” data-catnames=”{"677803":"News","461":"Local","681115":"Videos"}” data-tagnames=”{"709293":"Alpha Project Shooting","19005":"east village"}” data-customdata=”{"ContentPartner":"None","Source":"WEBFM","SyndicationAllowed":"true","mSNVideoCategories":"MSN Video v4 Connector-most watched news","mSNVideoContentSupplierID":"NBC_Local","mSNVideoCountry":"us","subtitle":"nosubtitle","uploadedByTeam":"1","youtubeChannel":"None"}” data-autoplay=”false” data-cplay=”true”>NBC 7’s Dave Summers spoke to the wife of a security guard shot and killed this weekend at an Alpha Project shelter in East Village.

Prosecutors allege the killing was committed to benefit and promote the gang to which the defendants allegedly belong, though why Buchanan was targeted was unclear. Deputy District Attorney Matthew Carberry alleged that surveillance footage and smart street lights captured the men waiting for Buchanan to arrive from a meal break before gunning him down in the street around 7:30 p.m., then fleeing the scene. Both men allegedly parked about a block away, walked toward the Alpha Project and opened fire on Buchanan, who was pronounced dead at a hospital.

Carberry said “two separate muzzle blasts” can be seen on surveillance footage, indicating two shooters, and spent rounds from both 9mm and 45-caliber firearms were found at the shooting scene.

The prosecutor also alleged that Hill’s DNA was found on spent cartridges at the scene.

Related Stories

east village Jan 8, 2020

2 Arrested in Connection to Slaying of Alpha Project Security Guard

east village Dec 31, 2019

Wife, Friends Honor Slain Alpha Project Security Guard at Vigil

Copyright CNS – City News Service

This article tagged under:

Alpha ProjectErnest Lee Buchanan

Weather Forecast

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *