Suspect In Murder Of Fontana Man Apparently Commits Suicide
One of the suspects accused of murdering a Fontana man was found dead in his jail cell yesterday of an apparent suicide.Richard Gonzalez, 18, died at 6:50 p.m. Wednesday at the West Valley Detention Center, Deputy Coroner Andrew Avery told KTLA.
He was taken to San Antonio Community Hospital where he was pronounced dead.
Gonzalez and Edward Anthony Morales, 18, were booked on suspicion of murder in the death of 40-year-old Alejandro Padilla, the father of Morales's ex-girlfriend, Emily.
Padilla was reported missing on July 26; the next day his body was found inside his burned-out vehicle in Rialto.
Padilla was reportedly the process of filing a restraining order against Morales when he was killed.
"Apparently there was [tension] in the past," Fontana Police Sgt. Doug Imhof told ABC News. "I don't know to what extent that the father was involved in the ending of the relationship, but the relationship did end at some point."
Morales has pleaded not guilty, as has his mother, 37-year-old Alma Quezada, who was charged with being an accessory to murder.
Police said there were reports of yelling in front of Padilla's house the morning he disappeared. Padilla and his car were missing when officers arrived. A broken bat and blood were found at the crime scene, according to the LA Times.
Morales and his friend, Gonzalez, were charged with murder as well as robbery, carjacking, kidnapping and arson.
Gonzalez had previously served jail time for threatening "to commit a crime which will result in death or great bodily injury to another person," according to prosecutors.
"I want to thank all the community for their support and for not leaving me and my kids alone," said Liliana Pelayo, the wife of Padilla, during a brief press conference which was held after the arrests were announced on August 6, the Fontana Herald reports. "In my heart I wanted to believe that that person wasn't involved but he is," she said. "We hope he gets what he deserves."
"She feels responsible for the death of her father," Teresa Pelayo said of her granddaughter, Emily. She is devastated."