UPDATED: Four Hemet area residents arrested in connection with San Jacinto double homicide

UPDATED: Thursday, Jan. 11, 11:45 p.m.

Sheriff’s officials have announced the arrest of four Hemet area residents in connection with last week’s double murder of Lauren Lopez and Patrick Powell Jr.

The two men and two women arrested for the double homicide have been booked into jail and remain in custody – two held on bail ranging from $2 to $3 million and two held without bail.

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On Jan. 10, sheriff’s officials arrested four Hemet-area residents in connection with the Jan. 3 shooting deaths of 19-year-old Lauren Lopez of San Jacinto and 22-year-old Patrick Powell Jr., of Hemet.

Arrested were Ariel Irene Savoie and Alexis Mary Garcia, both 19 and Kenneth Patrick Wilson and Martel Patrick McBride, both 18.

Officials have not released any information regarding the suspected motive behind the murders.

Sheriff’s officials began investigating the murders of 18-year-old, Lauren Lopez and 22-year-old, Patrick Powell Jr., after the pair was found dead inside Lopez’ bullet-riddled car. Miguel Shannon photo

19-year-old, Lopez, of San Jacinto and 22-year-old, Powell, of Hemet, were found murdered inside Lopez’ car Wednesday afternoon, Jan. 3. Her black Chevy hatchback was found riddled with bullet holes at the intersection of Ramona Expressway and Warren Road in an unincorporated area north of San Jacinto.

The shooting left the car’s rear window with multiple bullet holes in it and the front, driver’s side window was shattered. Deputies found multiple shell casings and shattered glass in the roadway, just south of the intersection.

During the course of their subsequent investigation, Sheriff’s Central Homicide Unit investigators gathered information and developed leads about who they believed had been involved in Lopez’ and Powell’s murders, Riverside Sheriff’s Sergeant Walter Mendez explained after the arrests.

Based on their investigation officials sought and obtained search warrants for two residences located within the city of Hemet, one in the 300 block of Monte Vista Way and the other in the 100 block of La Amistad Way.

Deputies from the Sheriff’s SWAT team served both warrants Wednesday morning without incident, according to Mendez.

“The Hemet Police Department and the Riverside District Attorney’s Office provided support during the operation,” Mendez explained, saying, “Their assistance facilitated the successful outcome of the warrant service.”

Officials found multiple shell casings and shattered glass at the scene of the double homicide. Miguel Shannon photo

19-year-old, Ariel Irene Savoie and 18-year-old, Kenneth Patrick Wilson were both arrested at the La Amistad residence and 19-year-old, Alexis Mary Garcia and 18-year-old, Martel Patrick McBride were both arrested at the Monte Vista Way residence.

All four alleged suspects were booked on suspicion of committing two counts of murder with malice. Additionally, Savoie, Wilson and McBride were booked on suspicion of the special circumstance of kidnapping.

Savoie and Wilson are being held on $2 and $3 million respectively and both Garcia and McBride are being held without bail. All four alleged suspects are scheduled to be arraigned at the Southwest Justice Center in Murrieta, Friday, Jan. 12.

Anyone with additional information regarding this investigation is encouraged to contact the Hemet Sheriff’s Station at (951) 791-3400 or Central Homicide Unit investigators at (951) 955-2777. Callers can refer to incident file number I180030043 and can remain anonymous. Citizens may also submit a tip using the Sheriff’s Homicide Tipline online form.

Eddie George/Hemet News video

 

 

ORIGINAL STORY: Officials investigating double homicide after victims found dead in car

SAN JACINTO — Details are still emerging after sheriff’s officials began investigating what appears to be a double, fatal shooting on the 35000 block of Ramona Expressway, at the intersection of Warren Road. The incident happened in an unincorporated area of San Jacinto.

The investigation began just before noon, Wednesday, Jan. 3., after deputies from the Riverside County Sheriff’s Hemet Station received reports of a single-vehicle collision.

Sheriffs officials are conducting a homicide investigation after finding the bodies of two possible shooting victims inside a black Chevy, Wednesday afternoon. Miguel Shannon photo

When they arrived in the area, deputies and other emergency first responders located a dark-colored passenger vehicle with two occupants inside, officials from the Sheriff’s Media Information Bureau explained in a Twitter release.

The vehicle, described by witnesses as a black, Chevy, four-door hatchback, was riddled with bullet holes. The car’s front, driver’s side window was also shattered and deputies found multiple shell casings and shattered glass in the roadway, just south of the intersection.

Deputies and other emergency first responders determined the two occupants from the vehicle had succumbed to “unknown injuries,” according to the release.

Based on their initial investigation, the incident is being handled as a possible shooting-related homicide.

Investigators from the Hemet Station and Sheriff’s Central Homicide Unit responded to the scene and assumed the investigation. They were being assisted by members from the Sheriff’s Forensic Services Bureau and other officials and a Sheriff’s mobile command center was brought to the scene from the Sheriff’s San Jacinto Police Station.

Throughout the afternoon, officials were seen pouring over the location of the incident and forensic technicians and other officials scoured the area for evidence, which they documented, photographed and collected.

Citing the ongoing investigation, officials have not released any further information regarding their investigation.

Officials have closed Ramona Expressway, between N. Sanderson Avenue and Bridge Street and also closed Warren Road between Ramona Expressway and Cottonwood Avenue.

Officials have not specified how long the road closures will remain in effect, but the ongoing investigation is causing a traffic nightmare for evening commuters, who report traffic backed up for miles on Ramona Expressway as well as alternate routes into and out of the San Jacinto Valley.

Anyone with information regarding this investigation is encouraged to contact the Hemet Sheriff’s Station at (951) 791-3400 or Central Homicide Unit investigators at (951) 955-2777. Callers can remain anonymous. Citizens may also submit a tip using the Sheriff’s Homicide Tipline online form.

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Contact the writer: trevor.rcns@gmail.com

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Trevor Montgomery, who recently moved from Riverside County to Shasta County, runs Riverside County News Source and Shasta County News Source. Additionally, he writes for Riverside County based newspapers Valley News, The Valley Chronicle and Anza Valley Outlook as well as Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident.

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations, including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center and Lake Elsinore Station, along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 27 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and has 13 children and 14 grandchildren.

 

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