General Crime

Jerome Moore arrested in the shooting death of Martin Gonzales on Mantelli Drive next to Las Animas Park in Gilroy

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Gilroy police have made an arrest in connection with a fight on Tuesday in which one man was fatally shot and the shooting suspect stabbed multiple times. Jerome Moore, 34, of Gilroy, was arrested in the shooting death of Martin Gonzales, who was killed during a fight with Moore during which Moore suffered multiple stab wounds, according to police Sgt. Pedro Espinoza. Police are still seeking two or three other people who may have taken part in the fight but fled on foot or by car, Espinoza said.

“Someone was responsible for stabbing Moore,” Espinoza said. “We don’t know if it was Gonzales, or two or three other people involved.” Moore was arrested on suspicion of murder and being an ex-felon in possession of a firearm and booked into the Santa Clara County Main Jail after he was released from a hospital, Espinoza said. Detectives believe that the firearm used to shoot Gonzales, 68, was some kind of semi-automatic gun but it has not been located, nor has the instrument used to stab Moore, Espinoza said.

Someone who was there after the fight may have picked up the gun and hid it or ran away with it, according to Espinoza. At about 6:10 p.m. Tuesday, Gilroy police answered an emergency call about a double shooting in the 300 block of Mantelli Drive next to Las Animas Park, police said. When Gilroy police got there, “it was a pretty chaotic scene, people running, screaming” and cars driving quickly away, Espinoza said.

Officers then called the California Highway Patrol and the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Department to provide assistance, Espinoza said. Gonzales was pronounced dead at the scene and Moore, a second reported shooting victim, was taken by air ambulance to a Bay Area trauma center for treatment, according to police. One vehicle driven away from the scene, a white Toyota Celica, was recovered but the driver fled, Espinoza said. Gilroy police learned later that Moore had puncture wounds, not gunshot wounds, according to police.

At the scene of the shooting, Moore’s injuries “were thought to be gunshot wounds by the medics there,” Espinoza said. The CHP and sheriff’s office helped secure the crime scene and obtain witnesses to the shooting, Espinoza said. Witnesses told investigators that some males had run away before officers arrived, police said. So far, police have decided that the shooting was not related to gang activity and there is no evidence drugs were involved, Espinoza said.

Gonzales and Moore likely knew each other but “we don’t know why they fought,” he said. The investigation is active and police are still interviewing witnesses and people who may have been involved in the crime, Espinoza said. Police are asking the public for help in identifying people who may have taken part in the crime or witnessed it.

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