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Teen’s role in slayings detailed

Collin Romero and Ahmed Lateef (Source: APD)

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Unsealed court documents lay out a 15-year-old’s admission to his role in the torture and murder of two teenage boys last year and also ties the suspect to a recent house party where a high schooler was fatally shot.

Julio Fabian “FaFa” Almentero, is charged with two counts of murder, three counts of tampering with evidence, two counts of kidnapping and two counts of armed robbery in the Dec. 16 slaying of Ahmed Lateef, 14, and Collin Romero, 15.

In a pretrial detention motion filed Wednesday, prosecutors say Almentero was at a party on Sept. 29 where Sandia High School student Sean Markey was shot and killed.

“Of serious concern, (Almentero) was in possession of a firearm at that party,” a prosecutor wrote. It is unclear whether Almentero is a suspect in Markey’s death.

Prosecutors have named Stephen “Calypso” Goldman, 20, and Jimmie “Flex” Atkins, 23, as accomplices in the double homicide, but they have not been charged. However, Goldman’s father, 43-year-old Stephen Goldman Sr., and Almentero’s uncle, Anthony Aragon, 37, are each charged with two counts of tampering with evidence in connection with the slayings.

Jimmie Atkins

Stephen Goldman, 19 (MDC)

Stephen Goldman Sr. (MDC)

Lateef and Romero were reported missing on Dec. 16 and found buried in shallow graves in the mesa northwest of Rio Rancho a couple of weeks later. Lateef had been shot 19 times and Romero had been shot nine times. Both teens had been beaten.

Witnesses told police Lateef and Romero had met Goldman Jr. to sell a “small amount of marijuana” and buy a gun but “never returned.” Multiple people told police they heard Goldman Jr., Atkins and Almentero had killed the pair and the three bragged to others that they hit them “with fists and guns.”

Almentero told his side of the story during an April 30 interview with police, according to an unsealed criminal complaint filed in District Court on Wednesday.

Almentero told a detective Goldman Jr. encouraged him to punch the two teens as he drove them out to the mesa. Almentero said Lateef and Romero were thrown out of the car soon after and Goldman Jr. struck them with an “AR-style” pistol.

“(Almentero) heard a gunshot, put his head down and then heard several more,” a detective wrote. “He saw Romero and Lateef lying on the ground and was made to help put their bodies in the trunk.”

Police say Almentero denied shooting the victims. He told them Goldman Jr. called Almentero’s uncle, Aragon, after the shootings to help get rid of the bodies.

According to the complaint Aragon met the three at a Motel 6 off Coors and Interstate 40 before he and Atkins drove the bodies to the mesa to dump them on the side of the road.

“(Goldman Jr.) had asked Aragon to take a photo of the two victims but Aragon refused and told (Goldman Jr.) that if he wanted the photos he should take the photos,” a detective wrote.

Aragon told the detectives that, afterward, Goldman Sr. told his son and Atkins they “needed to burn the car” and the car was later found torched in the mesa by Laguna police.

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