SAN JOSE — Murder victim Albert Cobarrubias’ mistake was believing it’d be safe to play pool with the garage door open on a winter night in his gang-infested neighborhood.
Four years after Cobarrubias paid the ultimate price for his blind faith in a civilized society, a jury Wednesday convicted his killer of first-degree murder and the attempted murder of four of his buddies.
Michael Lucio Frausto, 27, now faces a 210-year sentence for firing into the garage in the East Side neighborhood of Meadow Fair on Jan. 23, 2010, where Cobarrubias and his friends were hanging out.
It took the jury less than two days — after an eight-week trial — to find Frausto guilty of murder, four counts of first-degree attempted murder and gun enhancements that add up to the eye-popping triple-digit sentence. Judge Vanessa Zecher of Santa Clara County Superior Court is set to sentence Frausto on Jan. 16.
Cobarrubias, 31, was an aspiring lawyer and ex-Marine who volunteered regularly at the social-advocacy and media collective Silicon Valley De-Bug. The group’s mission is to reduce racially disproportionate incarceration rates, partly by informing defendants of their rights so they don’t take an expedient plea bargain out of a sense of being overwhelmed and alone.
Prosecutor David Pandori, who handled the trial, credited San Jose police Sgt. Dave Gutierrez and Lt. Tony Mata for putting together a solid case despite the lack of eyewitnesses who could identify the shooter. It was…