Local News

Police Look For Suspect In Two Sanford Murders

Posted December 13, 1999

— A 23-year old woman is dead and the search is on for the men who stormed into her family's apartment.

Around 1 a.m. Tuesday, three men knocked on the front door of a house and were let inside.

Once inside, they shot 60-year-old Jose Delafuente Garci and his 23-year-old daughter, Maribel Garza Delafuente, in the chest.

Sanford Police say Garci is in fair condition, but his daughter died from her gun wound. The incident happened in front of Maribel's 3-year-old son, Jorge. Nothing was taken from the house.

Sanford residents cannot believe their city has had two murders in the past eight days.

"For what reason could someone have to do something like this," said Joan Smith, a neighbor of the Delafuentes.

Sgt. Kevin Gray of the Sanford Police Department says there was no reason for the shooting.

"It was brutal," Gray said. They just walked in and shot both these people then left for no reason."

Sources say police are looking into the possibility that three men may have come to the house looking for somebody. This crime is somewhat similar to one that happened in the daytime just over a week ago in Sanford.

In that case, two men entered a Latino home, and left after shooting and killing one of the family members.

"I don't know if it was a coincidence, but both victims were Hispanic," Gray said.

Police say the alleged triggerman in that case, 29-year-old Vernon Eugene Spinks of Sanford remains at large, and is now listed as a suspect in the most recent murder."

"Until we can eliminate him, he is going to be a suspect," Gray said.

Police are familiar with Spinks. He was just released in prison in July. Police say he has been seen in Durham, Chapel Hill and Sanford since last week's murder.

Anyone with any information is asked to call Sanford Police at919-775-8268.

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