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Rural Manteca murder case moves forward

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POSTED July 31, 2014 12:58 a.m.

One of the two suspected Hells Angels motorcycle club members believed to be responsible for the murder of 26-year-old Daniel Martinez of Lathrop in August of 2011 will be in court today. 

David Splan, 43, of Tracy, is set to appear before Judge Seth Hoyt in Department 21 of the Stockton Courthouse at 1:30 p.m. in advance of what was expected to be a trial that was to begin on Aug. 11.

Splan, along with 32-year-old Brandon Gann of Stockton, is being charged with the murder of Martinez after a scuffle on a rural Manteca road turned deadly when one of the two mean allegedly pulled out a gun and fired at Martinez and the unidentified 30-year-old man he was with. 

According to witnesses, Martinez and the other victim were waiting on Ideal Parkway – located off Highway 120 just east of Manteca – on motorcycles when a white SUV with two men pulled into the parking lot.

Without warning, the vehicle reportedly rammed one of the motorcycles and the two men inside jumped out and started brawling with Martinez and his counterpart – both of whom, authorities believe, were members of the Most Envied Motorcycle Club.

At one point during the fight one of the two men from the SUV went back to the car, grabbed a handgun, and started firing. Martinez was struck several times and was pronounced dead at the scene. The other man, who was struck in the upper body, underwent surgery and ultimately survived.

Martinez grew up in Manteca, and attended local schools.

The beef that led to the shooting, however, wasn’t disclosed by investigators.

Gann was arrested by Oakdale Police for questioning in April of 2012, but wasn’t formally arrested and charged with the murder until January of 2013. He and Splan were taken into custody on the same day. A picture of him wearing his Hells Angels “cut” – the leather vest that bikers wear with identifying patches – was circulated by police prior to his actual arrest. 

Gann will next appear in court on Aug. 11. Both men are charged with premeditated murder, attempted murder, use of a firearm during the commission of a crime, intentional discharge of a firearm and street terrorism with enhancements. 

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