Delivery alert

There may be an issue with the delivery of your newspaper. This alert will expire at NaN. Click here for more info.

Recover password

Breaking: Five Dead in South Valley Shooting

BCSO Deputies and crime scene personnel work the scene of a five person homicide on Long Lane SW Sunday Jan. 20, 2013. (Pat Vasquez-Cunningham/Journal)

9:16 p.m. — Police have released the names and ages of the victims in the South Valley shooting.

They are:

Greg Griego, 51

Sarah Griego, 40

Zephania Griego, 9

Jael Griego, 5

Angelina Griego, 2

 


8:23 p.m. — It was a “horrific” crime scene that confronted deputies Saturday night: Former Calvary church Pastor Greg Griego; his wife, Sarah; and their three youngest children dead — fatally shot multiple times with a “military-style” assault rifle and other weapons — at their South Valley home.

The suspect in custody is the couple’s 15-year-old son, Nehemiah Griego, who neighbors said often wore “nothing but camouflage” and wanted to be in the army.

Greg Griego

“I’ve never seen a scene quite like this,” Bernalillo County Sheriff Dan Houston said at a news conference Sunday morning.

The teen is accused of using several weapons, including a “military style” assault rifle, according to the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office, to kill his parents and three youngest siblings.

The sprawling home is in the 2800 block of Long Lane, a dirt road in the South Valley just off Old Coors Road. The couple had a total of 10 children, but it appeared only the three youngest and the 15-year-old were at home at the time of the shootings.

The sheriff’s office is releasing few details, including when or where Nehemiah Griego was arrested. It did not release the names or ages of the victims, nor would it release a criminal complaint detailing the incident.

Neighbors and others identified the couple as Greg Griego, a gang member turned pastor, who served at Calvary Chapel, as well as at the Metropolitan Detention Center, and Sarah Griego, a stay-at-home mom who home schooled the children.

Nehemiah Griego was not well-known among those living within a block or so of the family’s home.

However, neighbor Peter Gomez said he saw the boy walk with siblings and his parents through the neighborhood regularly, and he “wore nothing but camouflage stuff.”

Greg Griego had converted his backyard barn into a halfway house for released prisoners, according to neighbors. He also held services at the county jail’s “God Pod,” where he gave inmates spiritual advice.

Griego is a former gang member, according to an article posted on the Prison Fellowship website. The organization advocates religious services for inmates.

Griego reportedly served in Desert Storm, and Nehemiah told neighbors he wanted to be a soldier. He always wore army clothing and camouflage, but he wasn’t allowed to play violent video games, according to one neighbor, since the boy’s parents didn’t allow anything “dirty or violent” and limited TV watching.

(C. Cunningham / Journal)

He is charged with two counts of murder ad three counts of child abuse resulting in death, and is being held at the Bernalillo COunty Jevenile Detention Center.

Griego lost one of his three jobs a few months ago and has struggled to find work, said the neighbor, who attends weekly Bible study at the home.

The lack of funds left the family living “paycheck to paycheck”, she said, and “it’s been really rough on them.”

Griego spent 13 years as a volunteer pastor at the Metropolitan Detention Center, jail spokeswoman Nataura Powdrell said. He was instrumental in starting the jail’s “God Pod,” a unit of the massive lockup where inmates interested in the Bible and its teachings could be assigned.

Also, Griego served as a volunteer chaplain at the Albuquerque Fire Department. The department issued a statement lamenting the loss.

“Chaplain Griego was a dedicated professional that passionately served his fellow man and the firefighters of this community,” the statement reads. “His calming spirit and gentle nature will be greatly missed. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Greg’s extended family.”

John Welch was a friend and coworker of Griego’s at Calvary church. The two have been friends for 20 years, he said, and Griego has helped troubled kids get their lives back on track.

“I can’t believe that he’s gone,” he said Sunday outside the church.

He said Griego “would help a lot of folks, a lot of especially young kids,” and let them stay overnight, sometimes.

“He was one of the most courageous, one of the most kind and dear chaplain friends … that understood when I would tell him about having run into people that did cocaine or were involved in homicides, and I’m just praying for the teenager that’s in custody now,” Welch said.

The “God Pod” at MDC has since been scrapped because jail officials determined it constituted a violation of other inmates’ religious rights, Powdrell said, but Greg Griego continued to work at the MDC as a volunteer minister. He handed out free bibles and worked as a spiritual counselor with inmates who wanted it.

She said he also helped set up the jail’s “Straight Streets” program, a Christian-based initiative to help inmates reintegrate into society. And Greg Griego was key in getting the jail to hire a full-time pastor; previously, it had been a volunteer position.

“I know he will be greatly missed by a great many inmates,” Powdrell said.

 


3:41 p.m. — Prominent community members are responding to the quintuple homicide in the South Valley on Saturday night, a tragedy that they said is depriving the city’s neediest from a spiritual and emotional advocate.

Greg Griego spent 13 years as a volunteer pastor at the Metropolitan Detention Center, jail spokeswoman Nataura Powdrell said. He was instrumental in starting the jail’s “God Pod,” a unit of the massive lockup where inmates interested in the Bible and its teachings could be assigned.

Also, Griego served as a spiritual counselor at the Albuquerque Fire Department. The department issued a statement lamenting the loss, saying that Griego was dedicated in helping firefighters and others.

“Chaplain Griego was a dedicated professional that passionately served his fellow man and the firefighters of this community,” the statement reads. “His calming spirit and gentle nature will be greatly missed.  Our thoughts and prayers go out to Greg’s extended family.”

Also, John Welch was a friend and coworker of Griego’s at Calvary church. The two have been friends for 20 years, he said, and Griego has helped troubled kids get their lives back on track.

“I can’t believe that he’s gone,” he said Sunday outside the church.

He said Griego “would help a lot of folks, a lot of especially young kids,” and let them stay overnight, sometimes.

“He was one of the most courageous, one of the most kind and dear chaplain friends … that understood when I would tell him about having run into people that did cocaine or were involved in homicides, and I m just praying for the teenager that’s in custody in now,” Welch said.

The “God Pod” at MDC has since been scrapped because jail officials determined it constituted a violation of other inmates’ religious rights, Powdrell said, but Greg Griego continued to work at the MDC as a volunteer minister. He handed out free bibles and worked as a spiritual counselor with inmates who wanted it.

She said he also helped set up the jail’s “Straight Streets” program, a Christian-based initiative to help inmates reintegrate into society. And Greg Griego was key in getting the jail to hire a full-time pastor; previously, it had been a volunteer position.

“I know he will be greatly missed by a great many inmates,’ Powdrell said.

 

Keep with ABQJournal.com for updates. And, of course, pick up tomorrow’s paper for much more information.


2:04 p.m. — Neighbors identified the two adults and three children killed Saturday night as the Griego family, who they described as active in the church as well as the South Valley neighborhood.

The suspect’s father, whom neighbors identified as Greg Griego, is a church pastor. When a nearby house burned down recently, neighbors said Griego was helpful in comforting community residents.

Griego and his wife, Sarah, have 10 kids, according to the pastor’s biography on the Calvary Church website, which has been removed. The other children’s ages were not given in the biography.

The suspect, Nehemiah Griego, 15, was not well known among those living within a block or so of the family’s home on Long Lane in the South Valley.

However, neighbor Peter Gomez said he saw the boy walk with siblings and his parents through the neighborhood regularly, and he “wore nothing but camouflage stuff”.

 

Keep with ABQJournal.com for updates.


A male juvenile is in custody this morning following a shooting in the South Valley that left five people dead. Police identified the teen as  Nehemiah Griego, 15, Sunday at about 1:15 p.m.  Officials have not yet released the names of the dead.

In an email from Bernalillo County officials, a shooting took place on Long Lane SW Saturday evening. Deputies were dispatched and found an adult male, an adult female and three children dead.

All victims appeared to have suffered multiple gunshot wounds. Multiple weapons appeared to have been used including an assault-type rifle. The investigation is ongoing and the identities of the victims have not been release, officials said.

A male  juvenile is in custody and is being charged with two counts of murder, and three counts of child abuse resulting in death.

More on this as it develops.

 

[photoshelter-gallery g_id=’G0000OAugoMX2sZM’ g_name=’South-Valley-Homicides’ width=’600′ f_fullscreen=’t’ bgtrans=’t’ pho_credit=’iptc’ twoup=’f’ f_bbar=’t’ f_bbarbig=’f’ fsvis=’f’ f_show_caption=’t’ crop=’f’ f_enable_embed_btn=’t’ f_htmllinks=’t’ f_l=’t’ f_send_to_friend_btn=’f’ f_show_slidenum=’t’ f_topbar=’f’ f_show_watermark=’t’ img_title=’casc’ linkdest=’c’ trans=’xfade’ target=’_self’ tbs=’5000′ f_link=’t’ f_smooth=’f’ f_mtrx=’t’ f_ap=’t’ f_up=’f’ height=’400′ btype=’old’ bcolor=’#CCCCCC’ ]
Click on a photo to buy reprints online or call our library at 505-823-3490.

AlertMe

Advertisement

TOP |