MECCA: Search underway for man accused of murdering other man

MECCA — Sheriff’s homicide investigators are searching for a man they allege fatally shot another man just after midnight, Sunday morning, April 8. The deadly, early morning shooting happened on the 91000 block of 5th Street, northeast of the Salton Sea – between Highway’s 86 and 111, in the unincorporated community of Mecca.

During their initial investigation officials identified the suspect as Gilbert Martinez, 29, of Indio and investigators are requesting the public’s help locating the missing suspect.

Homicide investigators are searching for Gilbert Martinez, accused in yesterday morning’s shooting death of Hugo Nunez. RSO photo

Deputies from Riverside County Sheriff’s Thermal Station responded to the area about 12:16 a.m., after receiving reports of an assault with a deadly weapon, Riverside Sheriff’s Sergeant Ben Ramirez explained after the fatal shooting.

When deputies arrived they reported found a man suffering from “several gunshot wounds,” said Ramirez.

The shooting victim, later identified as Hugo Nunez, was airlifted to a local hospital where he later succumbed to his injuries and was pronounced deceased.

Based on their initial findings, Thermal Station and Sheriff’s Central Homicide Unit investigators responded to the scene and assumed the investigation, which is active and ongoing.

Officials have not stated if there was a known motive for the deadly shooting or what might have led to it and citing their ongoing investigation have not released any other details.

Anyone with information regarding this investigation or who knows Martinez’ whereabouts is encouraged to contact Investigator Bloomquist at the Sheriff’s Thermal Station at (760) 863-8990 or Investigator Alfaro at the Central Homicide Unit at (760) 393-3528, or by email. Callers can refer to incident file number C180980003 and can remain anonymous. Citizens may also submit a tip using the Sheriff’s Homicide Tipline online form.


Contact the writer:

Trevor Montgomery, 46, recently moved to Shasta County from Riverside County and 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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