Suspects in Jill Sundberg killing linked to 2016 Royal City area shooting
EPHRATA, Wash. — Two Othello women were arrested Wednesday in connected to a December 2016 shooting homicide along State Route 26 near Royal City. Two other suspects in the shooting have been linked to the December 22, 2016 killing of Jill Sundberg near George.
Eustolio Campuzano, 27, and Paula Rodriguez Cuevas, 29, are both lodged in the Grant County Jail for suspicion of first degree assault.
The shooting on December 9, 2016, killed 28-year-old Arturo Sosa, and critically injured 33-year-old Jose Rafael Cano Barrientos, both of Othello.
According to detectives, Campuzano was the ex-girlfriend of Sosa, and she had told Cuevas that Sosa treated her badly and hit her while they were a couple. Campuzano said she wanted to give Sosa a beating so he wouldn’t get involved with other women.
Cuevas and Campuzano met up with three males at detectives think was the Shady Tree RV Park near George and planned out an assault against Sosa as retaliation. Two of the males are allegedly Fernando Marcos Gutierrez and Julio Albarran Varona, who are both currently jailed in connection to the December 22, 2016 killing of Jill Sunderberg near George.
On the night of December 8, 2016, Gutierrez, Varona, and two unidentified males came to Cuevas’ and Campuzanos’ home in Othello, riding in two vehicles. One vehicle, a pickup, left shortly after, but the four men that came in a GMC Yukon, stayed behind at the home. The men were armed with rifles and handguns and were drinking alcohol, and stayed until the early morning of December 9.
At around 4 a.m., Gutierrez, Varona, Campuzano, and one of the other man drove off in the Yukon while Cuevas was still allegedly asleep and stayed in the home with the remaining male.
The group waited and saw Sosa’s vehicle drive west out of town. Sosa and Barrientos were on their way to work in Royal City. The group in the Yukon followed Sosa and Barrientos on SR26. Near the intersection with SR262 just east of Royal City, the driver of the Yukon flashed their headlights at Sosa, which prompted him to stop his car.
Gutierrez and Varona, allegedly armed with rifles and a handgun, then forced Sosa and Barrientos back into Sosa’s vehicle, and drove west on SR26. The Yukon carrying Campuzano and the third man followed.
During the drive, a struggle broke out in Sosa’s car. Barrientos was shot in the upper chest while Sosa was shot in the head and killed. Gutierrez and Varona then took Campuzano up to Sosa’s vehicle and showed her the body. They allegedly threatened Campuzano, telling her: “You talk, and the second person you see if your son.”
The group then got back in the Yukon, drove to the trailer park near George, and after about an hour and a half, drove back to the home in Othello.
The men then allegedly held a gun to Cuevas’ head, threatening to kill her if she spoke of the shooting.
Forensic evidence obtained at the SR26 homicide scene matches that of suspect Fernando Marcos Gutierrez.
According to detectives, as of right now, aside from the involvement of suspects Fernando Marcos Gutierrez and Julio Albarran Varona in both the Sosa and Sundberg killings, it is not known if the Sosa killing played any role in the Sundberg killing.
The investigation is ongoing.
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