Teen murder suspect might have posed as girl in texts, online

2013-03-12T00:00:00Z 2014-09-05T15:34:30Z Teen murder suspect might have posed as girl in texts, onlineKim Smith Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
March 12, 2013 12:00 am  • 

A Pueblo Magnet High School student accused in the fatal shooting of a romantic rival might have pretended to be the girl in texts and on Facebook, luring the victim to his death, court records indicate.

Three of Jesus Duarte's friends told Pima County sheriff's detectives that in the three- to four-week period before his death, the 19-year-old had been receiving texts and Facebook messages purportedly from the girl to meet. Two days before Duarte was gunned down, a friend told investigators, he sent directions to his apartment to someone he thought was the girl, according to court documents.

On the night of March 3, Duarte was having a party at his apartment on South Camino de la Tierra. At about 11:30 p.m., he asked a friend to go with him to meet the girl.

But Duarte ended up heading for the meeting alone.

About 15 minutes later, Duarte was found with multiple gunshot wounds on the other side of the apartment complex, and a dark-colored Dodge Durango was seen leaving the area. Detectives have said Duarte died pleading for his life.

On March 5, detectives went to Pueblo High School to interview the girl. They were having the girl pulled from class when detectives say Sammy Anthony Terrazas Jr., 17, ran out of the same classroom, according to search warrant returns filed in Pima County Superior Court.

In the parking lot, detectives had already spotted a Durango matching the description of the one seen leaving the shooting. They then saw Terrazas get into the vehicle and drive away. A locked gate kept Terrazas from driving off. He went into an outbuilding but was caught soon after he jumped a nearby fence.

The girl told detectives Terrazas found out she was having sex with Duarte the day before the slaying. She denied sending any texts or Facebook messages to Duarte. Detectives linked Terrazas' phone number to the texts and messages received by Duarte, court documents state.

The girl and Terrazas' parents told detectives Terrazas owned a gun, and the girl told them she last saw it in the Durango's glove box the day of the shooting, court documents indicate.

Detectives seized a 9 mm handgun and ammunition during a subsequent search.

Contact reporter Kim Smith at 573-4241 or kimsmith@azstarnet.com

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