Mom defends son suspected in drive-by shooting that injured a teen girl in Exeter

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A mother continues to stand by her teenage son's side, even as he's charged with three counts of attempted murder in connection with a drive-by shooting. (KFSN)

A mother continues to stand by her teenage son's side, even as he's charged with three counts of attempted murder in connection with a drive-by shooting.

Brendon Martin is charged with three counts of attempted murder, burglary, and drug possession and transportation.

There is a codefendant in that last case, Cari Anne Bly.

The mother of one of Martin's friends, according to Martin's mother.

"We do talk a lot, my son and I, we do have a very, very close relationship," Brendon's mother Marylou Martin said. "So, I know where his heart is, I know where his head's at."

But Martin says her son is scared.

He's told her that he's innocent of shooting at three people from a car in April, injuring 14-year-old Vanessa Cruz.

Martin bailed out on the burglary charge a week ago but was brought back into custody this week on the attempted murder charges.

In May, Martin briefly walked free after the Tulare County District Attorney's office decided not to file those charges.

"Further investigation took place, we reviewed more police reports," Tulare County Assistant District Attorney David Alavezos explained. "Upon review of those reports, we decided to file charges."

"I mean, he wanted to be around mom, his family and some kind of normal but not enough time to do anything, very difficult."

Martin's mother says her son wasn't given the representation he deserved, but now has a good lawyer.

She has said that her son is not a gang member, but the attempted murder charges he faces include a special gang allegation.

He faces a maximum of 120 years to life in prison.

"A gang allegation, we have to prove that he is either an associate or a gang member, he is doing something for the benefit of the gang, or at the direction of the gang," Alavezos said.

Martin will be back in court next week for a bail hearing that is currently set at more than $2 million.

There will be a pre-trial setting on June 29.
Related Topics:
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