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GPD discusses solving Yona murder

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by Mindy Aguon

Guam - The Guam Police Department says they were able to solve the island's latest homicide through "good old fashioned police work". GPD held a press conference today releasing more details about the heinous murder of 31-year-old Vincent Peredo, who will be laid to rest tomorrow.

The agency's ability to solve the island's latest homicide was a result of the tireless work of more than 30 officers from various divisions in GPD.  18-year-old Derrick Cruz, 19-year-old Cal-Jerome Delorie, 16-year-old Darren Gonzolo Cruz, 16-year-old Zared Zermaine Lizama and 17-year-old Shayne G. Terlaje remain behind bars on $500,000 cash bail charged with murder, aggravated murder, burglary, a special allegation of possession and use of a deadly weapon in the commission of a felony, and conspiracy to commit burglary.

The five are accused of tying Peredo up and brutally beating him despite the victim telling them "they could take what they want", leaving him to die in his home and stealing marijuana.  Police confirm they were able to recover the baseball bat the defendants used to hit Peredo when they went into his Yona home last Monday morning in search of large quantities of marijuana. 

Authorities also were able to recover Peredo's cell phone, which Delorie admitted to police he used to make a call to 911.

Criminal Investigation Division Agent A.V. Camacho says police spent the first few days following Peredo's brutal murder following leads, conducting a "victimology" and gathering evidence.  Late last week agents executed more than a dozen search warrants which eventually led them to making the arrests.

Police Chief Paul Suba says there could be additional arrests in connection with the marijuana that the five defendants reportedly took from the home.  "Because of some of the narcotics cases and how they might relate to some of the other crimes committed, they are probably going to be residual arrests based on this case that midnight even include burglaries, robberies and thefts and definitely drug-type cases," said Suba.

GPD isn't saying how much marijuana was taken or recovered but confirmed another investigation is underway into other marijuana that was found planted in the nearby jungles of Peredo's home.  Continued Suba, "Who was all involved in the manufacture and distribution of those items because obviously at some point it led to individuals identifying that they could get marijuana from that locale, and I'm not going to say it's necessarily from the victim himself."

Agent Camacho added, "Based on everything that we've gathered, the defendants were not known to the victim."  When asked if at any time during the confessions did the suspects how they knew about the stash of marijuana, and to speculate on why they chose Peredo, Camacho said, "They did mention that they knew that there were patches of marijuana in that particular area. We're not going to say whether or not they were targeting that particular individual like the chief had mentioned, but it was known that there was patches of marijuana in the area."

Authorities didn't make it clear whether the suspects sold the drugs for money after the murder, but they said they have become aware of other minors who are selling drugs.  Captain Kim Santos added police were able to determine who the mastermind was out of the five suspects, but they are withholding that information.

Derrick Cruz and Delorie remain behind bars at the Hagatna Detention Facility, while the three minors are being held at the Department of Youth Affairs on complete lockdown.  The agency is following up with the Judiciary to determine whether they will remain in DYA's custody or be transferred to the Department of Corrections.

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