California police have linked five unsolved murders of mostly Hispanic men, raising concerns about a potential serial killer.
Five murders of men ages 21 to 54, four of whom are Hispanic, have taken place in Stockton, California, since July kicked off a manhunt for the killer.
The five victims have been identified as being: Paul Alexander Yaw, 35, Salvador William Dubedy Jr., 43, Jonathan Hernandez Rodriguez, 21, Juan Cruz, 52, and Lorenzo Lopez, 54.
All five men were found dead alone and in the early morning hours and all the murders took place in dimly lit environments. Some, but not all, victims were homeless at the time of their death.
Stockton Police released an unclear picture of a suspect Friday, saying information is limited and the suspect could be a man or a woman.
Police have only said “physical evidence” links the five murders.
An image of a suspect issued by Stockton Police. Chief McFadden said in a news conference Friday that they could be “male or female” based on the image.
Police Chief Stanley McFadden said Friday that the department needs help from the public to uncover new information, as gang violence and robberies have been ruled out.
Information leading to an arrest is now rewarded with $85,000, $75,000 from the City of Stockton and another $10,000 from Stockton Crime Stoppers. Stockton Police said misinformation had been circulated.
Stockton police told ABC news that all the victims were ambushed and that none of the attacks were drug-related or gang-related.
Paul Alexander Yaw was the first to be murdered on July 8, his family has confirmed. He was taken to hospital in the early morning hours, but died there from his injuries.
Yaw was the only one of the five victims who was not Hispanic.
Lorenzo Lopez, 54, was one of the older victims. He was found at 4400 Manchester Ave.
Paul Alexander Yaw was the first to be murdered on July 8, his family has confirmed. He was taken to hospital after being shot in the early morning hours, but died there of his injuries
His mother Greta Bogrow said in a statement: “He was my son, a father, grandson, nephew, nephew and brother and he was loved by many. He left a huge hole in our hearts and I hope they catch those responsible before this happens again.”
Bogrow said Yaw was homeless when he died.
Jonathan Hernandez Rodriguez, 21, was found dead in a car on East Hammer Lane on Aug. 11, according to the San Joaquin County Coroner’s Office.
Lorenzo Lopez, 54, was one of the older victims. His brother Jerry Lopez said, “It’s hard to accept that this has happened. I mean, me and my brother have been like twins. We were a part for a year, so we were pretty close.’
He hopes the new $85,000 reward will uncover evidence that will aid in the arrest of his brother’s killer.
“They’re working hard on it. I see the chief is doing a good job. He’s working really hard for the city to find out what’s going on,” Lopez told KCRA 3. “I appreciate you, Chief.”
Salvador William Dubedy Jr., 43, was born and raised in Stockton and was a father. He died where he was shot, five minutes after Yaw’s shooting, after police tried to rescue him
Salvador William Dubedy Jr., 43, was born and raised in Stockton and was a father. He died where he was shot, five minutes after Yaw’s shooting, after police tried to rescue him.
His wife only learned of the alleged link between the five murders through social media and was disappointed that she was not approached directly.
July 8 at 12.31 pm
Paul Alexander Yaw, 35, Wit
5600 Kermit Lane
August 11 at 9.49 am
Salvador William Dubedy Jr., 43, Spanish
4900 West Lane
August 30 at 6.41 am
Jonathan Hernandez Rodriguez, 21, Hispanic
800 E. Hammer Lane
September 21 at 4.27 am
Juan Cruz, 52, Spanish
4400 Manchester Ave.
September 27 at 1.53 am
Lorenzo Lopez, 54, Spanish
Stockton Mayor Kevin Lincoln explained that his office is working closely with the police to bring the killer to justice.
Stockton Police Chief McFadden said at Friday’s conference, “What makes these cases so challenging is that there are no witnesses because of the location, timing and lack of light.”
He told reporters that detectives watched hundreds of hours of video footage.
“We feel like they are somehow connected. To what extent we just don’t know at the moment,” he added.
“We have a series of murders that we believe are connected. The problem we have is we have no evidence to tell us if it’s one person, two or three. We just don’t know. We don’t have any video footage that even captured a crime, that’s even a gun in someone’s hand.”
“By definition, you could call this a serial killer,” he said.
“It doesn’t fit with what we’re used to seeing in gang killings.
One of our victims was a white man, so we have no evidence that these are hate crimes.”
Some of them did have a house. Some even lived nearby, but not all of them were homeless.’
The chief is now asking for information from the public.
“Look at your ring cameras and all the images you got from this data.”
McFadden, who became police chief just five months ago, also said CCTV surveillance of the shootings had been limited.
Stockton Police Chief Stanley McFadden, who took up the position just five months ago. He says the department believes the murders are related, but is now calling on the public for information
“Either this person or persons are very lucky in choosing where to go or they do their homework and go places where they know there are no cameras,” he said.
He said the police station has sent ballistics out for testing, but has not yet received a response.
He advised the residents of Stockton not to walk alone at night and not to be in dimly lit areas.
A tip line has been opened where people with information can report. The number is 209-937-8167. Information can also be sent to email@example.com.