Police make 10 arrests Thursday in multiple murder cases
2010-07-16 · By Editor
On July 15, Long Beach Police arrested five individuals for witness intimidation relating to a homicide trial currently taking place in Long Beach Superior Court. Another five suspects were arrested in connection with a separate homicide on the same day.
Long Beach Police Detectives from the Gang and Violent Crimes Division served search warrants at three locations in the city, and arrested five individuals in connection with an ongoing murder trial taking place at the Long Beach Courthouse.
Witness Intimidation will not be Tolerated
Defendants Jason Trejo and Eric Benites are on trial for the January 6, 2008 murder of Florentino Rivera in the area of 15th Street and Cedar Avenue. During the course of the trial, Homicide Detectives were made aware of incidents of witness intimidation that occurred to several of the witnesses and/or their families.
“Witnesses coming forward to testify are crucial to the successful prosecution of cases, and bringing justice to murder victims and their families is just as important,” said Lieutenant Lloyd Cox, from the LBPD Homicide Detail. “Incidents of witness intimidation will never be tolerated, will always be thoroughly investigated, and the suspects will be held to answer.”
Homicide Detectives are taking these threats seriously. After thoroughly investigating the complaints, they were able to identify the suspects and made arrests on Thursday. The suspects are identified as follows:
- Jose Garcia, age 19
- Jesus Perez, age 21
- Bernardo Villareal, age 19
- Jorge Gomez, age 32
- Efren Flores, age 19
Murder Suspects Arrested with Family Members
Of the group arrested for intimidation, one suspect was booked on additional charges of murder and attempted murder. On July 15, Efran Flores was one of two murder suspects taken into custody along with four other individuals arrested for aiding and abeting after the 2009 murder.
In June, detectives released sketches of the murder suspects in connection with the September 14, 2009 shooting of 20-year-old Robert Tripple of Long Beach, which occurred in the 200 block of West 20th Street. Ballistic evidence linked that murder to a previous attempted murder that occurred on August 21, 2009, in the 1500 block of West 20th Street. In that incident, the suspects fired into a group gathered on their porch, striking one of victims.
The sketches were successful in generating additional leads and police arrested the suspects on Thursday, as well as several family members who aided them in hiding from police.
The suspects arrested are identified as follows:
- Jesus Gonzales, 21 (murder/attempted murder)
- Efren Flores, 19 (murder/attempted murder)
- Maria Hernandez, 18 (aiding/abetting)
- Jesus Gonzalez, 47 (aiding/abetting)
- Adan Gonzales, 28 (aiding/abetting)
- Angie Cortes, 29 (aiding/abetting)