A 19-year-old Port Hueneme murder suspect who may face the death penalty in connection with the slaying of a Simi Valley man pleaded not guilty Wednesday.
Ventura County Municipal Judge Herbert R. Curtis Jr. set a May 23 preliminary hearing for Timothy Chrestman, accused of fatally shooting 24-year-old Andy Lee Anderson and his dog.
Anderson’s body was found March 6 at a remote campground north of Ojai. He had died two days earlier, authorities said.
Chrestman was arrested after Anderson’s 1987 pickup truck was found in West Hollywood. Authorities have refused to say what evidence, if any, implicates Chrestman in the case.
Deputy Dist. Atty. Michael K. Frawley said Chrestman shot Anderson as the victim stood next to his pickup truck March 4. Chrestman then shot the dog and drove off in the vehicle, Frawley said.
The defendant is charged with murder, robbery and cruelty to an animal.
Chrestman also has been charged with a special circumstance that accuses him of killing Anderson during the commission of a robbery. Prosecutors are considering seeking the death penalty in the case, Frawley said.
Chrestman is being held in Ventura County Jail without bail, a jail spokesman said.