OGDEN, Utah, July 17, 2018 (Gephardt Daily) — An Ogden man is facing charges of murder and obstruction of justice after a body was discovered in an alley Monday morning.
Ogden police responded to a report of an adult male laying bleeding in an alley in the area of 2610 Monroe Blvd. just after 7 a.m. The victim was found, deceased, between El Pollo Rico Mexican restaurant and an apartment building, an Ogdon Police Department news release said.
After several hours of investigation, Ogden Police detectives and Weber Homicide Task Force investigators took Jose Robert Zamora, 22, into custody. He was booked on charges of first-degree felony murder and second-degree felony obstruction of justice.
“Zamora is a neighbor and has had an ongoing dispute with the victim,” the news release said.
Investigators are still working on locating next of kin for the victim, who is 74. The victim’s name is not being released until the family has been notified.
A probable cause statement from police said: “We found a witness who claimed that around midnight, he had been walking on 26th Street, approaching El Pollo Rico. He stopped in front of the restaurant, approximately 20 to 30 feet north from the alley just south of El Pollo Rico. He observed the suspect male that he recognized, both from his work at Family Dollar and more currently at 7-Eleven, approaching from the north on Monroe Boulevard, walking south.”
The suspect male passed him and walked a short distance south and turned east up the alley. The witness did not know the man’s name, but he did know his face, the statement said.
“A few moments after the suspect male went into the alleyway the witness heard what he described as a physical altercation, and a high-pitched scream. He stated that a short time later, the suspect male he knew exited and alley and was sweating profusely and breathing heavily. He asked the suspect male if he was OK and the male ran south on Monroe.”
The witness took part in a photo lineup and identified Zamora as the suspect.
Another witness, who also recognized Zamora, said she saw the suspect outside her window around midnight. The witness said she had asked Zamora what he was doing and he told her he was going to “kill that old man.” She went outside and spoke with Zamora and he told her that he planned to wait outside the victim’s apartment and kill him because the victim had been following his daughter.
Upon locating and detaining Zamora, he was transported to the Ogden City Police Department for an interview.
“Zamora explained that his problems with the victim in the past included the incident approximately two days prior,” the statement said. “He admitted to punching the victim who had run off during that altercation. He stated that the victim had followed his daughter in the past and that one night he had seen the victim peeking into his daughter’s window.”
In the early hours of Monday, Zamora told police that he took a walk to his local 7-Eleven to the north. As he returned, he noticed the victim sitting on the porch to his apartment.
“He stated that his rage built and he called out to the victim asking him what he was looking at and then proceeded to charge at him,” the statement said. “The victim got up and went to enter his apartment but was struck from behind by Zamora. Zamora claims that he did not recall all the details, but that he struck the victim with a stick multiple times.”
After the assault, Zamora began to leave, but then returned and delivered two more punches to the victim, who he said did not appear to be conscious. The statement also said Zamora’s girlfriend claimed he had sent her a picture message of the victim following the assault.
Zamora then told police that he returned home, removed his bloody clothing and showered. He then took the clothing that he had worn in the assault as well as the weapon, placed them into a white garbage bag and threw that bag into a garbage can. He left in the morning to his family’s home in Davis County.
Police are requesting Zamora be held without bail.
The body was the second to be discovered in the city in less than 24 hours.
A news release from OPD on Sunday evening said the body of an unidentified female was found in a canal in the area of 1000 West and 600 North in the city’s Business Depot Ogden, a business/industrial park.
Officials said that death is being treated as suspicious.
The body was transported to the Medical Examiner’s office to determine the cause of death.
No further information has been released.
Anyone with information about either incident is asked to contact [email protected] or Detective Wilson at 801-629-8257.
Gephardt Daily will update this story as more information becomes available.