Case 134

Martha Puebla

*** Content Warning: child victim, gun violence ***

16-year-old Martha Puebla was no stranger to gang violence. She lived in California’s San Fernando Valley, where Latin American organisations like the 18th Street Gang and the Vineland Boyz controlled the streets. So when Martha inadvertently witnessed a gang-related murder, she knew to keep her mouth shut.  

However, after rumours circulated that Martha had ratted out the killer, she was shot to death out the front of her family home. 24-year-old Juan Catalan became the prime suspect, despite insisting he’d been at a baseball game at the time Martha Puebla was murdered. The only problem is, Juan had no proof of this alibi. Or did he?



Casefile Presents



Research & writing – Eileen Ormsby

Creative direction – Milly Raso

Narration – Anonymous Host



‘Flatline intro’ and ‘Come play with me’ intro and outro –

Audio production – Mike Migas 

Scoring – Mike Migas and Andrew Joslyn



Logo and website design – Paulina Szymanska



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Grand Jury Indictment against the Vineland Boyz



Long Shot – Netflix, 2017



‘Murder defendent with TV tape alibi sues LAPD’ – Santa Cruz Sentinel, Aug 5 2004

‘Man with TV show alibi sues LAPD’ – The Los Angeles Times, Aug 5 2004

‘Murder suspect cleared by TV show outtakes is suing the city of Los Angeles’ – The Greenwood Commonwealth

‘Ballpark film provides man alibi’ – Sioux City Journal, June 2 2004

‘Interrogation, then revenge’ – The Los Angeles Times, July 2 2008

‘Slaying of teen witness prompts LAPD changes’ – Los Angeles Times, July 18 2008



The Time Larry David Saved a Man from the Death Penalty – Mental Floss

How baseball, ‘Curb’ saved a man’s life – MLB News

Vineland Boyz guilty in drug, murder case – Los Angeles Daily News

Two men charged in Valley Slayings – The Los Angeles Times

60 Minutes: How comedy legend Larry David saved a wrongly arrested man – 9 News

How a taping of ‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’ saved an innocent man from death row – Innocence Project

How ‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’ saved this man from prison – New York Post

Long Shot: The horrifying true story of a man falsely accused of a brutal gangland murder – The Sun

Bad night for the Vineland Boyz – LA Weekly

Interrogation, then revenge – The Los Angeles Times

Clearing the case – LA Weekly

Man cleared by TV footage gets $320,000 – ABC News

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