Banks sentenced for murder: Influenced by conspiracy theories, Wheatland man gets 60 years to life

Nov. 25—Rory Banks, the 44-year-old man who was recently convicted for the murder of 55-year-old Ralph Mendez in Wheatland, was sentenced Tuesday by Yuba County Judge Benjamin Wirtschafter to 60 years to life for his actions on the night of May 12, 2021.

Banks, who was heavily influenced by conspiracy theories such as QAnon, killed Mendez and had plans to kill others on California's sex-offender registry. Banks was convicted of the burglary and murder of Mendez by a Yuba County jury on Oct. 28.

At around 12:45 a.m. on May 12, 2021, the Wheatland Police Department received a 911 call related to a shooting that had taken place in the 200 block of G Street in Wheatland, the Appeal previously reported. Mendez was found by law enforcement officers with a gunshot wound. Lifesaving measures were performed but he was pronounced dead at the scene, according to the department.