HAYWARD, Calif. (KTVU) - Hayward police made an arrest for the murder of Stacey Aguilar, a missing Hayward woman.
Police said 23-year-old Esmid Valentine Pedraza, a resident of unincorporated Hayward was arrested on Wednesday on homicide charges in connection to Aguilar’s murder. According to police Aguilar’s murder is still ongoing.
Aguilar's body was found on Saturday. Earlier this week, Hayward police Chief Diane Urban said that the victim's boyfriend had been arrested on suspicion of a domestic violence charge related to her, but declined to say if he's a suspect in her death.
Speaking at a crowded news conference at police headquarters, Urban said the boyfriend of 22-year-old Stacey Aguilar was arrested on Feb. 16, three days after Aguilar was last seen at a party near the corner of
Silva Avenue and Jackson Street in Hayward at about 11 a.m. on Feb. 13.
Aguilar's family reported her missing on Feb. 16, the day that her boyfriend was arrested, and Hayward detectives found her body in a rural area off of Morrison Canyon Road in Fremont at about noon on Saturday, Urban said.
A person of interest in Aguilar's death had been in custody on an unrelated charge, but police wouldn't identify that person until he's charged by the Alameda County District Attorney's Office. Urban declined to say if Aguilar's boyfriend was the person of interest.
Urban had said police were "very confident" that the person of interest is "the right person" who's responsible for Aguilar's death. She said, "The people in the community can sleep at night knowing there's not a murderer on the loose."
Urban said police interviewed Aguilar's boyfriend after she disappeared "along with a multitude of other people." Urban said police believe Aguilar was killed in Hayward before her body was disposed of in Fremont.
Alameda County coroner's bureau had preliminarily classified Aguilar's death as a homicide. She was found to have suffered numerous gunshot wounds, although the official cause of death is still pending.
Police originally treated Aguilar's disappearance as a missing person case but last Friday they reclassified it as a homicide even though her body hadn't yet been found.
Sgt. Ryan Cantrell said police received calls about noise at the party where Aguilar was last seen alive but didn't get calls about a homicide at the party.
Cantrell said Aguilar's death is the third homicide in Hayward so far this year.