UPDATE: Sioux City police search for the suspect in a weekend murder
By Kristen Johnson, Multimedia Journalist/ Weekend Anchor - bio | email
20-year-old Martin Castellanos. Call CrimeStoppers at 258-TIPS with information about Castellanos.
2003 Audi A4 with license plate 892YSD that Castellanos might be driving.
22-year-old Ricardo Vital into custody, on a charge of Accessory after the Fact.
Home at 1420 West 15th in Sioux City where police say 20-year-old Adrian Rojas Hernandez was shot in the head.
SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KTIV) -
A Sioux City man is dead, and police are now on the hunt for his killer.
Authorities say the man was killed early Sunday morning on the west side of town.
Monday afternoon, authorities identified the victim as 20-year-old Adrian Rojas Hernandez.
They said he was shot in the head at this house, behind me, but that's not where his body was found.
"We had a witness that was out in his field, doing some combining, saw something burning in a ditch, didn't pay that much attention to it. Then later on, someone driving down the gravel road actually saw the body there," said Sioux City Police Chief Doug Young.
When South Dakota authorities were called to a ditch off Interstate 29 Sunday, they had little to go on.
"The body was partially burned," said Lincoln County Sheriff Dennis Johnson.
They put out the call to area authorities.
"We contacted the Sioux Falls police dept, the Sioux City police dept, Worthington, MN, and Omaha, and asked them if they had any missing persons," explained Johnson.
Sunday, Sioux City police took a missing persons call for 20-year-old Adrian Rojas Hernandez. Fingerprints showed it was a match.
"It was very evident that this individual was probably not murdered that location. We believe this individual was murdered here in Sioux City between three and six a.m.," explained Young during a press conference Monday.
The police investigation led officers to 1420 West 15th Street, where they arrested the man living inside the residence, 22-year-old Ricardo Jaime Vital, as an accessory to the crime. Authorities say Vital told them that 20-year-old Martin Castellanos shot Rodriguez, cleaned up the crime scene, and threw away blooding clothing, bedding, and other evidence in a curbside trash can. Vital told police Castellanos then dumped Hernandez's body in a ditch near Sioux Falls.
"You commit a homicide. You want to dispose of the body, get as far away as you can," said Young.
Authorities said the three men were acquaintances.
"They were together in the evening prior to this, so whatever transpired in there, we'll have to determine that," added Young.
Castellanos is 5'8" and 180 pounds. He has a light moustache. He may be driving his mother's car, a 2003 Audi A4 with license plate 892 YSD.
Authorities said he should be considered armed and dangerous. However, Young said he believes this was an isolated incident because the suspects knew the victim.
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