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Fifth Man Arrested In California For Alleged Drug Killing After Body Found In Arizona Desert
Garrett Cole, Juan Toscano, Javier Ontiveros, Juan "Johnny" Vega and Edrich Esquer-Rubio are all charged with the murder of a man in Bakersfield whose remains were found in Arizona.
Another arrest has been made after a body was found buried in the Arizona desert this month, officials said.
Garrett Sebastian Cole, 31, has been taken into police custody in connection with the suspected slaying of a man in Bakersfield, California in late September, the Mohave County Sheriff’s Office announced.
He was arrested by officers and a SWAT Team in Riverside County, California at about 10:00 a.m. on Friday, KGET-TV reported. An arrest warrant had previously been issued for Cole on charges of murder, kidnapping and robbery; prior to his capture, authorities had deemed him armed and dangerous.
Four other suspects had been apprehended in connection with the case before police caught up with Cole.
On Sept. 23, police had been dispatched to an address in the 300 block of Real Road in Bakersfield, where officers discovered evidence leading them to believe that a violent crime had been committed at the home.
That evening, Juan Toscano, 34, was arrested in connection with the homicide case after he allegedly confessed to fatally shooting an individual over a drug deal, according to Bakersfield Now. He was on probation at the time of the incident following convictions on charges of carrying a loaded firearm without registration and driving while intoxicated.
Toscano claimed the person’s corpse was later taken from the residence by other people. He was charged with second-degree murder and possession of a firearm by a felon and is next set to appear in court on Nov. 8, online jail records show.
Then, on Oct. 5, Javier Ontiveros, 25, Johnny Vega, 29, and Edrich Esquer-Rubio, 21, were also jailed in connection to the homicide case after new evidence surfaced following the execution of a search warrant at a Fort Mohave residence.
The following day, human remains were exhumed in the desert near Fort Mohave, Arizona, approximately 275 miles southeast of Bakersfield. Authorities suspect the unidentified man’s corpse was transported across state lines after he was fatally shot by Toscano.
The victim’s identity or cause and manner of death hasn’t been released by authorities.
Ontiveros, Vega and Esquer-Rubio face charges of first-degree murder, kidnapping, robbery, conspiracy, possession of a firearm by a felon and destroying or concealing evidence.
Ontiveros faces additional charges for manufacture of a controlled substance, hit and run resulting in property damage, driving without a license and driving without insurance.
Esquer-Rubio faces additional charges including for the transport and sale of narcotics, possession and purchase of a cocaine base for sale, possession of a controlled substance while possessing a loaded firearm, illegal concealed carry in a vehicle, evading arrest and driving without a license.
Cole’s suspected role in the alleged murder plot is unclear, but he faces the same set of charges as Ontiveros, Vega and Esquer-Rubio. It’s also unknown if Cole has retained legal counsel to comment on his behalf. He is set to appear in court on Oct. 11 while Esquer-Rubio is set to appear in court for the murder-related charges on Oct. 10, Ontiveros on Oct. 11 and Vega on Oct. 21.
All five men remain in the custody of the Kern County Sheriff's Office in California.
Oxygen.com has reached out to the Mohave County Sheriff’s Office and the Bakersfield Police Department for comment.