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UPDATED with PHOTOS: Four more charged in deadly South Tacoma shooting

Post by Stacey Mulick / The News Tribune on March 31, 2010 at 8:22 am with 20 Comments »
March 31, 2010 3:25 pm
Byron Alvarez

Pierce County prosecutors have charged four men with second-degree murder in connection with last week’s deadly shooting in a South Tacoma alley.

Warrants have been issued for the arrests of Byron E. Alvarez, 32; Richard C. Sanchez, 20; Santiago V. Mederos, 18; and Andres M. Mendez, 24.

Prosecutors charged the four Tuesday in the death of Saul Lucas-Alfonso last Thursday. Earlier in the week, prosecutors charged a 15-year-old boy with second-degree murder in the case.

Santiago Mederos

The teen made his first court appearance Monday in juvenile court on the charges. A hearing is scheduled for next month to determine whether he will be tried as an adult. The News Tribune is not naming him because he’s been charged as a juvenile.

The deadly shooting occurred about 12:20 a.m. Thursday in the alley of the 7000 block between South Puget Sound Avenue and South Tacoma Way. Officers arrived and found Lucas-Alfonso, 25, mortally wounded. He was pronounced dead at a local hospital a short time later.

Andres Mendez

Charging documents indicate the five accused in Lucas-Alfonso’s death went out early Thursday to collect on a debt that Alvarez believed he was owed by another man.

The five allegedly broke into the debtor’s car, which was parked in an alley behind the 7000 block of South Puget Sound Avenue, and started ransacking it for valuables, the documents state. Lucas-Alfonso and two friends arrived in the alley, confronted the group of five suspects and a fight broke out.

The 15-year-old boy told detectives his group started to lose the fight, so they headed to their vehicle. Someone in his group fired a shot, which hit Lucas-Alfonso, charging documents state.

Richard Sanchez

Lucas-Alfonso’s friends told police that they’d gone to a nearby house with Lucas-Alfonso and spotted a group of people in an alley near a vehicle. The group in the alley left but returned a few minutes later, they said.

Two members of the returning group approached one of Lucas-Alfonso’s friends and demanded his wallet. The man said no, court documents state.

“The witness stated that he was knocked to the ground, where he was punched and kicked multiple times,” court documents state. “Police noted that this witness was holding his right ear and had blood covering his face and hands.”

One of Lucas-Alfonso’s friends then heard a gunshot but did not see who fired it, the documents state.

The teenage suspect told investigators that after the shooting, Sanchez, Mederos and Mendez met and agreed to say nothing about the shooting, charging documents state.

The homicide remains under investigation.

UPDATE: Tacoma-Pierce County Crime Stoppers is offering up to $1,000 for information leading to the arrest of any of the four men. Tipsters can remain anonymous.

Reach Crime Stoppers at 253-591-5959.

Leave a comment Comments → 20
  1. TIGER8HOTEL says:

    I really don’t think people think about the consequences of crimes while committing them.

    I am positive that the debt was not worth 6 lives.

    Don’t ever loan money or items you can’t afford to take as a loss.

  2. i bet they are illegals

  3. lgcnelson84 says:

    Because they all happen to have hispanic names you think they are illegally living here? If they were born here, then they are citizens and therefore allowed to be here just like the rest of us. They absolutely need to be held accountable for what they’ve done, but assuming deportation is the right answer proves ignorance to the fact that lots of hispanic people live here legally.

  4. IKnowMoreThanYou says:

    Deport them regardless- take away their citizenship and send ‘em away.

  5. lgcnelson84 says:

    Well, then how about we trace back everyone’s ancestry and send all “bad apples” back to “where they came from”? Regardless of whether they have EVER lived there, understand the language, or know someone in that country or not…. let’s give all our problem children back to their motherlands… that will solve ALL our crime issues!

    Ignorance really is bliss, isn’t it?

  6. tacomagirl4567 says:

    if they are legally here where are you gonna send them ?
    you don’t know weither they are hispanic or white asian or black !
    you can’t asume because of there last name .

  7. you bleeding hearts suck

  8. ohcommon1 says:

    Stupid kids. No parental or adult guidance. Many negative thoughts fill my head. I can’t help it because it is what we read about more often than not. Their futures’ are now going to stereotypical…go to prison…join afluent prison gang…get tatoos marking them in the gang…violence…no reform…released from prison…(repeat). What was the debt? (more negative thoughts) because the collection was taking place at 12:20 AM. They were not collecting borrowed dollars that the vicitim needed to pay a utility bill. It is something more and worse. Oh well. Stay tuned for another situation just like this to make the news.

  9. lgcnelson84 says:

    No bleeding heart here… I’m not saying let them go, they know not what they do, or anything of that sort. Anyone who knows me knows that I am the first one to point out stupidity and give my two cents whether it’s wanted or not.

    However, before opening my mouth or unloading on a forum I make sure I know what I’m talking about with educated arguments. I don’t just spout off my close-minded, ill advised thoughts, while name-calling and lambasting those who disagree with me. Perhaps that makes me a bleeding heart, but I just call it being smart.

  10. pungentsound says:

    You don’t know weather they are hispanic or white asian or black !
    Warrants have been issued for the arrests of Byron E. Alvarez, 32; Richard C. Sanchez, 20; Santiago V. Mederos, 18; and Andres M. Mendez, 24.
    Yes this is a good point if you are a totally F’m moron.

  11. TIGER8HOTEL says:

    Try this on Washingtonians

    The Lakewood cops killer was black.

    The people responsible for the death in the Tacoma alley are Hispanic.

    The Tacoma police chief that killed his family and himself was (now you’re getting the hang of this) .

    I really don’t think race has to do with any of these murders.

  12. tacomagirl4567 says:

    just because they have the last names
    that don’t mean they cant be another race
    not only hispanic people have those last name !!!!!

  13. WonTonsInMySoup says:

    Seriously, they called all be filipino for all you know. Most filipino’s have last names of a spanish descent. They could also be from Spain, Portugal, Canada, etc. There are some truly ignorant people around here.

  14. wishfullthinking says:

    After reading a sad article about a 25 year old kid getting his life taking and about a young 15 year old kid who obviously had no kind of parental guidence and will spend the rest of his life behind bars, I find it bizarre that most of the comments are about race?

  15. festeringfestus says:

    Another “DRUG” deal gone bad,simple plain and easy to see !!!!!!

  16. JanieJones says:

    Well, isn’t it convenient that all these guys have booking photos on file already to make them easier to identify. Obviously it’s not the first time they’ve made trouble.

  17. borninusa says:

    Wow this is why we have such a cruet world cause of uneducated racist people in today’s world. So they are have Mexican names that give the right to say weather they are illegal or not? Think about it people if they were white then what?or they were Black, Asian, Iraqi, Indian. Who are you people to judge! ” tho shawl not judge.” no matter ware you live there will always be crime. for the people who are trying to blame parents WRONG!! Wake up people its not the parents fault its the individuals that co-meted the crime.

  18. Wow there all citizens to see your guys comments about them is just stupid in general they made a mistake there kids just getting into trouble like most people but someone was hurt it was an accident but now they have to pay for there consequences

  19. People so worried about if there illegal or not just cause there Hispanic forgot the whole reason. They posted and automatically start jumping the gun assuming gangs and being illegal like wow what ever happen to the real topic a man lost his live

  20. And also I know three of them parents are really nice hard working people who do not associate with gang activity they work really hard and are very sweat people now I can’t saw the same for the 15 year old or the bryon guy a lot of these kids grew up here in Tacoma and there parents work hard to provide and make good money too you can’t really control who your child hangs out with at school or what they decide to try

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