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What to Know: Possible Serial Killer Tied to Stockton, Oakland Homicides

What to Know

  • A serial killer may be responsible for the shooting deaths of six people in Stockton and Oakland dating back to April 2021
  • Authorities have released surveillance footage showing a person of interest in the case
  • There is a $125,000 reward for information leading to an arrest

Northern California authorities are on the hunt for a possible serial killer following the shooting deaths of six people in Stockton and Oakland dating back to last year.

Ballistics tests and some video evidence linked the crimes in the two cities, which are about 70 miles apart, police said.

Here’s a look at the cases, information about a person of interest, how to submit tips and more.

Timeline of Attacks and Victims Identified

Authorities believe the cases listed below are related.

April 10, 2021 – A 40-year-old Hispanic man was fatally shot at about 4:18 a.m. in Oakland. The victim, identified as Juan Vasquez Serrano, was shot multiple times, according to the Alameda County coroner’s bureau.

April 16, 2021 – A 46-year-old Black woman was shot and injured at about 3:20 a.m. in the area of Park and Union streets in Stockton. The victim told investigators that she was inside her tent when she heard someone walking around outside. The suspect fired multiple shots, wounding the woman, but she tried to defend herself by advancing toward her attacker. The shooter lowered the gun.

July 8, 2022 – A 35-year-old white man was fatally shot at about 12:31 a.m. in the 5600 block of Kermit Lane in Stockton. The victim was identified as Paul Yaw.

Aug. 11, 2022 – A 43-year-old Hispanic man was fatally shot at about 9:49 p.m. in the 4900 block of West Lane in Stockton. The victim was identified as Salvador Debudey Jr.

Aug. 30, 2022 – A 21-year-old Hispanic man was fatally shot at about 6:41 a.m. in the 800 block of E. Hammer Lane in Stockton. The victim was identified as Jonathan Hernandez Rodriguez.

Sept. 21, 2022 – A 52-year-old Hispanic man was fatally shot at about 4:27 a.m. in the 4400 block of Manchester Avenue in Stockton. The victim was identified as Juan Cruz.

Sept. 27, 2022 – A 54-year-old Hispanic man was fatally shot at about 1:53 a.m. in the 900 block of Porter Avenue in Stockton. The victim was identified as Lawrence Lopez Sr.

Authorities said the five men in Stockton were ambushed and shot to death, alone in the dark. Police later said the two additional cases last year had been tied to those killings. It was not immediately clear if the Oakland victim was alone when he was killed.

Person of Interest and Possible Suspect

Stockton police have released surveillance video showing a person of interest in the case. Police said the person could be a suspect or a witness.

Police have also released a description for the suspect in the non-fatal shooting on April 16, 2021. The surviving victim described the suspect as a male, unknown race, 5-foot-10 to 6 feet tall, with a thin build. The individual was wearing a dark colored hooded sweatshirt with the hood on and dark colored pants. They were also wearing a black COVID-style face mask.

Police Reward

As of Oct. 6, there is a $125,000 reward for information leading to an arrest.

How to Submit Tips

Anyone with information regarding the case is encouraged to call 209-937-8167. The public can also email information to policetips@stocktonca.gov.

People wishing to remain anonymous can submit tips via Stockton Crime Stoppers at 209-946-0600 or the Stockton Crime Stoppers website.

Video surveillance can be submitted via this online portal.

Advice for the Public

Authorities are reminding the public to stay vigilant and practice good situational awareness. People should travel in well-lit areas and avoid isolated areas. They should also try to travel with at least one other person.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Source: NBC Bay Area

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