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WOMAN STRIKES PLEA DEAL IN FEBRUARY S.L. SLAYING

A woman accused of helping "hit" a teenager her gang leader allegedly wanted dead has struck a plea bargain with prosecutors.

Melissa A. Chacon, 21, is expected to plead guilty to conspiracy to commit murder, a 2nd-degree felony, in the death of Joey Miera. She originally faced one count of murder, a first-degree felony.In exchange, prosecutors want the woman to testify against three other fellow gang members. Court documents indicate Chacon and two other men were ordered to kill by Tyrese S. Smith, 22, a prison inmate serving time for aggravated assault.

Prison officials caught the plan on telephone recordings made at the prison. Inmate calls are monitored, according to signs near the phone bank. Despite the warning, Smith placed at least two calls discussing the plan with Chacon, the documents state.

Smith, police said, wanted revenge against Davin Trujillo, a man Smith thought had shot one of his friends. Trujillo was not involved in the 1994 incident, however.

The documents filed in 3rd Circuit Court state Chacon, Collin Carter, 18, and Cameron Lopes, 19, targeted Trujillo but instead shot Miera on Feb. 22, 1996, as he slept on the floor of a home at 918 S. Navajo St. (1380 West).

Carter, Lopes and Smith are scheduled to appear at a preliminary hearing April 23, in which Chacon is expected to testify.

Prosecutors have also agreed to dismiss an aggravated arson charge against Chacon for her truthful testimony. However, she still must pay restitution in both cases and remain in jail until both cases are adjudicated, prosecutors said.