Augustin Velasquez
Augustin Velasquez
Placentia Police Department

4 Charged in Placentia Front Yard Murder But One Suspect is on the Lam

UPDATE, APRIL 28, 9:38 A.M.: The final of four Placentia murder suspects is now in custody, according to police.

Augustin Velasquez, 20, of Anaheim, was arrested without incident Thursday afternoon after a car he was driving was pulled over in Buena Park, according to the Placentia Police Department.

Velasquez is scheduled to be arraigned Monday for the alleged special circumstances murder of 35-year-old Robert Rios, who was gunned down in his Placentia front yard on Jan. 19, police say.

From left: Charles Frederick Coghill, Israel Cordova and Ricardo Valenzuela.
From left: Charles Frederick Coghill, Israel Cordova and Ricardo Valenzuela.
Placentia Police Department

Charles Frederick Coghill, Israel Cardova and Ricardo Valenzuela have also been charged with murder with special circumstances and first-degree residential burglary in the slaying.

ORIGINAL POST, APRIL 14, 6:49 A.M.: Four men have been charged with special-circumstances murder, which could lead to death penalty sentences, in the fatal shooting of a man in his Placentia front yard in January.

One suspect remains a fugitive, however.

He is Augustin Velasquez, who was charged with murder with special circumstances and first-degree residential burglary along with Charles Frederick Coghill, Israel Cardova and Ricardo Valenzuela, according to the felony complaint.

Robert Rios, 35, was gunned down around 11:40 p.m. on Jan. 19 in front of his home in the 900 block of Vista Avenue in Placentia.

In March, police released surveillance video of three men entering Rios' front yard. No motive for the shooting was given at the time.

The felony complaint alleges the shooting happened during a burglary and that Valenzuela and Velasquez had been armed with a machine gun while Coghill carried an unspecified firearm.

Coghill already pleaded not guilty to the charges against him on Tuesday.

Cordova, who was arrested on Feb. 1, and Valenzuela, who was popped on Jan. 24, are awaiting arraignment hearings.

In the meantime, all three are being held without bail at the Central Jail Complex in Santa Ana.

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