Originally created 09/16/99

Daughters describe night of shooting



APPLING -- Through tearful testimony, Rosalva Vazquez recounted how her mother shielded her and her sister from gunfire as their father lay dying only a few feet away.

"Mr. Pineda said, `You're all a bunch of idiots. I came here to finish you off'," Rosalva, 16, told the jury Wednesday in the third day of testimony in the trial of Narciso Pineda.

Mr. Pineda is charged with shooting and killing Mario Molina and Leonel Vazquez, both 42, and Prisca Rosales Vazquez, 41, and her unborn child on Nov. 26 outside their mobile home at Mobile City Rentals in Grovetown.

Prosecutors are asking for the death penalty. Mr. Pineda claims that he shot Mr. Molina and Mr. Vazquez in self-defense and that the death of the woman was accidental.

Rosalva told the jury she spoke to Mr. Pineda the night he called her father less than an hour before the killings and asked the family to his house for dinner.

"I heard my father say to Narciso that he didn't want to go to his house because we had already eaten but thanked him for the invitation," she said.

According to Rosalva, her father agreed to let Mr. Pineda come over to the house. Shortly after his arrival, an argument broke out between the men.

"My dad told Mr. Pineda to calm down and that he didn't want any problems," Rosalva said. "Then Narciso pulled his gun."

Both Rosalva and her 13-year-old sister, Graciela, testified Wednesday that they believe their father wasn't armed the night he was killed. However, in their original statement to police, both girls said he had a gun but didn't have time to pull it before he was shot.

Crispin "Pablo" Mendez, a resident of Mobile City Rentals, testified that Mr. Pineda threatened to kill him just months before the November shootings when he refused to give him a beer.

"He started threatening me and he pulled a gun on me," Mr. Mendez said. "He said that he was going to kill me."

Mr. Mendez said that several days later, Mr. Pineda raised his shirt and showed his gun again, asking him, "Are you still brave?"

The defendant's 19-year-old son, Alonzo Pineda, who drove his father to North Carolina the night of the shootings, told the jury that he never saw his father throw his gun into the Savannah River and that he was upset when he learned of Ms. Vazquez's death.

"While we were driving, he told me that he shot some people and he didn't know who, and that I had to drive him to North Carolina because my brother had been shot," Alonzo Pineda said. "He didn't know how many people he had shot but he thought it was two men. When he heard Ms. Vazquez was hit, he said it couldn't be true and that he never meant to hit the lady.

"He was upset. He grabbed his head and was shaking it."

The state rested its case against Mr. Pineda at about 6 p.m. The defense will begin calling witnesses this morning in Columbia County Superior Court.

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Scotty Fletcher at (706) 868-1222, Ext. 111, or ccchron@augustachronicle.com.