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Police identify 3 recent homicide victims

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Police have released the names of the three people who were killed around the city over the past nine days.

Albuquerque Police Department spokesman Simon Drobik identified the victims as 55-year-old Shirley Olguin, Benjamin Hutchinson, 39, and Vernon “Adrian” Talamante, 34.

Officers found Olguin fatally shot outside the Palisades RV Park, on Central near 98th street, in the early morning hours of March 29.

Police have not said what led to the shooting or if they have any suspects in the case.

Three days later, on April 1, police say Hutchinson and another man were in a fight at the Flying J truck stop in west Albuquerque, near 98th and Interstate 40, when Hutchinson was intentionally struck by a car. He was taken off life support a few days later.

The other driver fled the scene after striking Hutchinson. Investigators have released surveillance photos of the car they believe he was driving — a silver Chevrolet Cobalt with a Pennsylvania license plate and photos of a person of interest taken from inside the store.

The most recent homicide investigation began Wednesday, when officers responding to a shooting call found Talamante shot to death in a home at the Russwood apartment complex, in the 4200 block of Atrisco NW, north of Ladera.

No arrests have been made in the case but Drobik said they interviewed numerous witnesses at the scene.

Police have not said what led to that shooting or given any other details.

The Journal was not able to reach the families of Olguin or Hutchinson, but spoke with Talamante’s wife Thursday.

Vernon “Adrian” Telemante, 34 (Courtesy of Jessica Telemante)

Jessica Talamante said she had a bad feeling when her sister-in-law called to tell her the apartment she shared with her husband, who went by Adrian, was inundated with yellow tape and police vehicles.

“My heart just dropped,” she said. “You just know—you get that feeling.”

The family waited on the outskirts of the complex until around 10 p.m., when officers broke the news.

Talamante said she doesn’t know why her husband was killed and police didn’t give her any details, except that it happened inside neighbor Brandon Cruz’s apartment.

Cruz was taken away by police as a witness but released later.

Cruz’s mother, Sandra Lucero, said she spoke to her son after his release.

Lucero said her son told her two men, who he didn’t recognize, said something along the lines of “what’s up” to Talamante and Cruz as they walked into Cruz’s apartment.

“They didn’t think nothing of it,” she said. “While Brandon was closing the door, (one of the other men) kicked the door open and they started shooting.”

Lucero said a bullet grazed her son’s arm, and went through his shirt, as he was behind the door—Talamante was fatally shot.

“I don’t know if he was the target or what,” she said.

The deaths of Olguin, Hutchinson, and Talamante come on the heels of a spate of homicides throughout March.

In the past three weeks, 10 people have been killed around the city and only one arrest has been made.

And police have reported a total of 19 homicides throughout the year, with five of them resulting in arrests. By this time last year the city had seen 11.


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