(L.A.) Jose Robles, 16, Died in a Hospital

Case Number: 2003-03556

Los Angeles County is reporting the death of a 16-year-old Hispanic male that occurred in a hospital.

The coroner’s office has identified the teen as Jose Robles.

Manner of Death: Homicide

Cause of Death: Multiple Gunshot Wounds

RIP JOSE “CHINO” ROBLES (May 15, 1986 – May 10, 2003)

Formal pronouncement of death was made on Saturday at 9:14 p.m.

The decedent was killed in a drive-by shooting in South L.A.

Two men were arrested for the crime and spent about 20 years behind bars before they were exonerated in 2024.

Jofama Coleman and Abel Soto were 20 and 15 years old, respectively, when they were arrested and charged.

Prosecutors had claimed that the murder was carried out in retaliation for an earlier confrontation that allegedly involved Robles and Coleman’s teen brother.

In 2007, Soto was sentenced to 72 years to life in prison for allegedly firing the deadly shots despite the fact that no one could identify the shooter at the time of the shooting.

Coleman was sentenced to 25 years to life after being convicted of driving the white van that was used in the drive-by shooting. The witness that identified Mr. Coleman as the driver recanted his trial testimony in 2023, saying he had never actually seen Mr. Coleman driving the van.

Following a petition in 2023 by their attorney Ellen Eggers, the case was reviewed. In January 2024, a judge declared Soto factually innocent of the crime. Coleman was declared factually innocent in February 2024.