Authorities announced on Friday that they have captured two suspects in connection with a “cartel-style” massacre that took place in central California one month ago and resulted in the deaths of six people, including a young mother and her 10-month-old son. One of the suspects was taken into custody following a gun battle.
Angel Uriarte, age 35, and Noah Beard, age 25, were named in charge paperwork as the suspects in the case. During a news conference, Tulare County Sheriff Mike Boudreaux stated that the suspects are known members of the Norteno gang. He stated that the shooting that occurred on January 16 was most likely the result of a confrontation with members of the Sureos, which is a competing gang.
“The suspects and the victims have a long history of gun violence, heavily active in guns, gang violence, gun violence, and narcotics dealings,” Boudreaux said, adding, “the motive is not exactly clear at this point.”
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Alissa Parraz, who was 16 years old, and her son Nycholas, who was 10 months old, were killed as they escaped the overnight shooting at a residence in Goshen, which is a farming village about 30 miles southeast of Fresno. Beard is suspected of killing both of them. On Friday, the authorities released a security footage that showed a young mother leaping over a fence while holding her infant boy in her arms. Both bodies were discovered in the street outside the house where they had been living.
In addition to the mother and her child, two additional victims have been identified as Marcos Parraz, 19, Eladio Parraz, 52, Alissa’s grandma Rosa Parraz, 72, and Jennifer Analla, 49. The mother and her child were also killed in the incident.
According to Boudreaux, all of the victims died as a result of gunshot wounds, and the most of them were shot in the head. One of the deceased was a 10-month-old boy.
“This was clearly not a random act of violence. This family was targeted by coldblooded killers,” Boudreaux said.
The arrests were made as part of a multiagency investigation codenamed Operation Nightmare, which also involved searches of various California prisons and round-the-clock surveillance of the suspects over the course of the past ten days. DNA evidence found at the site is credited with helping law enforcement officials quickly zero in on the two suspects.
According to the Tulare County District Attorney Tim Ward, Uriarte and Beard are each facing six counts of murder, along with enhancements related to the use of a firearm and the fact that the acts were committed in participation of a criminal street gang. Uriarte and Beard are also accused of carrying out the murders as members of a street gang. If the suspects are found guilty, they might have to face the death penalty in the end.
CNN is doing an investigation to establish whether or not both suspects have legal counsel.
The massacre occurred before to a string of subsequent mass shootings in California at the end of the previous month, one of which occurred during a celebration of the Lunar New Year in the suburb of Monterey Park, which is located just west of Los Angeles. Eleven persons lost their lives in the shooting that took place on January 21.
At a mushroom farm in Half Moon Bay, California, there was another attack on January 23, which resulted in four deaths. That same evening, a shooting took place in Oakland, California, leaving one person dead and seven people injured.
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