Two more teens arrested for the murder of a man, 69, who was found dead in the North Carolina cemetery
Two teens charged with helping heavily tattooed 18-year-old ‘murder model airplane enthusiast, 69’ in blood-stained North Carolina cemetery – as police say the attack was ‘not entirely random’
- Johnathan Daniel Villanueva-Galer, 19, was arrested Tuesday and charged with murder for the murder of James Taylor, 69
- Maria Elizabeth Pena-Echevarria, 18, was charged with murder on Saturday
- Unnamed 16-year-old suspect was detained in connection with the Taylor case
- Taylor, a model airplane enthusiast, was found dead on Mt. Olivet Cemetery in Raleigh on Friday Night
- 911 caller reported finding clothes, shoes, latex gloves and large blood spatter
North Carolina authorities have made two more arrests in connection with the murder of a 69-year-old man who was found bleeding in a cemetery last week.
Johnathan Daniel Villanueva-Galer, 19, was arrested Tuesday and charged with murder in connection with the fatal attack on James Lacy Taylor at Mount Olivet Cemetery in Raleigh on Friday.
A 16-year-old suspect, who has not been named, has also been arrested at the request of minors.
Last Saturday, police arrested 18-year-old Maria Pena-Echeverria on charges of murder as a result of her alleged involvement in Taylor’s murder.
Pena-Echeverria first appeared in court on Tuesday and was named public defender.
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Johnathan Daniel Villanueva-Galer, 19 (left), was arrested Tuesday on a charge of murder. On Saturday, police in Raleigh, North Carolina, arrested Maria Elizabeth Pena-Echeverria, 18 (right) in connection with the murder of a 69-year-old man in a cemetery
The victim, James Taylor, was found with fatal injuries in a Raleigh cemetery last Friday
A Wake County judge told the woman she could face life in prison without parole or the death penalty if convicted as charged, reported ABC11.
Pena-Echeverria was ordered to be held in prison without bail pending her next appearance on June 21.
The Wake County District Attorney revealed that the interaction between the victim and the three suspects was not entirely random, but she declined to go into detail.
Police were called to the Mount Olivet cemetery after receiving a 911 call from a North Carolina state employee who told an emergency responder that he saw three people shoot past his car, with one of them jumping over a fence.
Police were called to Mount Olivet cemetery in the city on Friday evening, where they found a seriously injured man. Authorities have not specified the nature of the injuries. On Saturday, police identified the man as James Lacy Taylor
The trio ran to two separate vehicles, including an extended cab pickup and an older model brown or blue sedan, which then headed toward Reedy Creek Road.
When the state worker entered the cemetery grounds, he said he found clothes on the floor, which initially led him to believe that the people who had fled were “rummaging around.”
But then he came upon a bloody path that led to the graveyard,
The caller reported that he found a pair of black latex gloves, a pair of shoes and a pair of trousers, along with “a blood spatter about two feet wide on the floor.”
Officers who arrived at the scene found a critically injured Taylor. He was taken to a nearby hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Police said they are withholding Taylor’s cause of death so as not to jeopardize the investigation.
Friends told CBS17 that Taylor was known and loved in the local model airplane community, of which he was a part.
Taylor’s close friend David Hogue described the victim as “one of the nicest people you’ll ever meet. Always willing to help you, always willing to lend your tools. He’d give you the shirt off his back, literally, if you needed it.’