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Church's Chicken shooting suspect has lengthy criminal history

Posted: 6:24 PM, Nov 25, 2019
Updated: 2019-11-26 13:24:08-05
albert blake churchs chicken shooting suspect.jpg

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - The man accused of killing a Church’s Chicken employee in Otay Mesa West waived extradition in Tennessee Monday.

Investigators and U.S. Marshals tracked down Albert Lee Blake in Memphis last week.

Blake was wanted for the murder of Maribel Ibanez and shooting of two other employees at the South San Diego County restaurant earlier this month.

According to the Shelby County District Attorney’s office, Blake’s fugitive from justice without a warrant case was dismissed by the judge, which means San Diego authorities will head to Tennessee and pick him up and bring him back to answer to charges in San Diego.

RELATED: Suspect in Church's Chicken shooting arrested in Memphis

In addition the murder charge, Blake is also facing two counts of attempted murder, accused of willfully and deliberately shooting Mario Rojas and Humberto Gerardo Cota.

According to court documents, Blake has a lengthy criminal history dating back to the 1990s.

In 2016, he was charged with counts of manufacturing a controlled substance, possession of marijuana for sale, possession of firearm by a felon and more. He also violated probation earlier this year. Blake also served time for counts of felony domestic violence in 2002 and burglary in 1990, and had DUI charges on his criminal record.

TIMELINE: Events that led to Church's Chicken shooting

Blake faces 25 years to life for the latest charges.

Lt. Matthew Dobbs with SDPD’s Homicide Unit says Blake will be back in San Diego this week where he will be booked in the San Diego County Jail.

He will then be assigned a court date to appear on the warrant.

Ibanez's sister Gabriela Merino told 10News she is glad he was caught, but nothing eases the pain of losing her sister.

"Nothing's going to bring her back," said Merino. "She was a good woman."

She said the only question she has for the man accused of killing her sister, " I just want to say to him… why he did that to my sister."