Police search field near Gilroy city councilor’s home, site of fatal shooting

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A 19-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of murder in connection with a fatal shooting at the home of a member of Gilroy city council, where one person died and three others were injured when neighbors described as a Halloween party, authorities said on Sunday.

Benjamin David Calderon was taken into custody on Saturday afternoon by a SWAT team after the nighttime shooting in the 400 block of Las Animas. Police were called after violence erupted at a large outdoor party at the home of Gilroy City Council member Rebeca Armendariz. It is not known if she was home at the time.

At least one suspect fired a gun, authorities said. It was not immediately clear if Calderon had an attorney who could speak on his behalf. Her mother declined to comment to KTVU on Sunday.

A man was pronounced dead from gunshot wounds at the scene and three others were injured. Two of them are believed to have fatal injuries, but there was no update on their condition on Sunday afternoon. The age of the victims ranges from 17 to 19, authorities said.

“Some sort of altercation ensued between the last spectators and at least one suspect drew a gun and started shooting,” said Lamonte Toney of the Gilroy Police Department.

On Sunday, investigators spent part of the afternoon searching in a large field near where the city councilor lives, but they didn’t want to say what they were looking for. It is not known if Armendariz was at the house when the shots were fired.

Armendariz said in a statement on Saturday that she was unable to share details due to the active police investigation. She said in the statement that she and her family were cooperating with the police.

“I am grateful that my family and I (…) were not hurt in this tragedy, and I pray for those whose loved ones were touched by what happened,” she said. .

The names of the victims were not immediately made public, and no motives were disclosed.

A man who did not want to be identified says he is working in the face of the shooting and was not surprised by what happened.

He spoke in general terms of the region.

“It’s like there is always something going on,” he said. “There is a late night brawl or there are issues where the police need to be called, there is some type of assault or garbage being thrown or cars parked illegally, there are always sketchy things going on. pass here. ”

The councilor is a fourth generation Gilroyan, elected to the council in 2020 and is said to have spent years advocating for working class families.


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