Utah homicide victims in 2010

Published: Sunday, Jan. 2 2011 9:00 p.m. MST

9. SOUTH SALT LAKE, Feb. 22 — Steven Leon Villiard, 64, was shot to death inside his home, 73 E. Claybourne Ave. (2770 South). Jason James Davis, 37, and Chad Duran Nester, 24, were charged with murder and a trial is scheduled for March. Villiard had a long history of drug-related crimes. Alleged motive: drugs. Method: shooting.

10. KEARNS, March 5 — Amos Pacheco, 25, was shot and killed while helping his girlfriend drop off her children to her ex-husband and the father of the children. Police say Joshua James Montoya, 26, shot Pacheco in the chest following an argument between the two men. Pacheco was sitting in the passenger seat of his girlfriend's car when he was shot. The children had already gone inside the house. Montoya is charged with murder. Alleged motive: domestic. Method: shooting.

11. WEST VALLEY CITY, March 9 — Maralee Andreason, 55, was beaten to death inside her apartment. Her boyfriend, Thomas J. Valdez, 41, was charged with murder. Valdez previously served prison time for beating up a former girlfriend. Police say Andreason was brutally murdered, suffering two open head wounds, two stab wounds to her cheek and torso, blunt force trauma to her head and torso, countless bruises and scrapes and multiple rib fractures. Valdez is scheduled to stand trial Jan. 11-13. Alleged motive: domestic. Method: beating.

12 and 13. SALT LAKE CITY, April 2 — Vernee Ronald Halliday, 73, and Linda Covey Halliday, 69, were shot and killed inside their Federal Heights home. Their son, Vernee Stuart Halliday, 35, was believed to have committed the murders before shooting and killing himself. The Hallidays lived at 1475 E. Penrose Drive. Friends and family said they did not know of any trouble with Stuart Halliday or any trouble between him and his parents. Police are also unsure of a motive. Motive: unknown. Method: shooting.

14. WEST JORDAN, April 4 — The body of Benicio Hernandez-Herrera, 33, was found in a muddy field near 6300 West and 7000 South. Benjamin Arriaga-Luna, 37, was charged with murder. He said he believed Hernandez-Herrera was having an affair with his wife. Alleged motive: jealousy. Method: shooting.

15. SALT LAKE CITY, April 5 — Stephanie Williams, 19, was shot and killed in her grandmother's house at 474 E. 600 South. Delfino Arriaga-Luna, 31, allegedly told police he shot Williams twice in the head. He is the brother of Benjamin Arriaga-Luna, who was accused of a separate homicide that happened the day before. Investigators, however, do not believe the two incidents are related. Arriaga-Luna was charged with murder, obstruction of justice and the use of a firearm by a restricted person. Motive: unknown. Method: shooting.

16. WEST VALLEY CITY, May 1 — The body of Ngor Ngor, age unknown, was found in his driveway at 3979 S. Renault Circle (2060 West). Investigators are calling his death a homicide, but have no suspects. Motive: unknown. Method: unknown.

17. MIDVALE, May 6 — Sarah Hernandez, 26, was strangled to death. Her common law husband, Carlos August Soto-Lopez, 29, was charged with murder. Investigators said Soto-Lopez struck Hernandez with a glass pitcher, which caused it to break, and then strangled her with a phone cord. When police arrived, Soto-Lopez allegedly told them he killed his wife and lifted his bloody hands in front of him as if he was ready for handcuffs to be placed on him. He was also charged with two counts of domestic violence in the presence of a child. Alleged motive: domestic. Method: strangulation.

18. LAYTON, May 11 — Ethan Stacy, 4, was beaten to death not long after he arrived in Utah from Virginia to spend the summer with his biological mother and her fiancee. His body was disfigured and buried in a remote area of Powder Mountain. Police say he was left alone, locked in an apartment bedroom, while his mother went to get married because they feared people would call police if they saw Ethan's injuries. Ethan's mother and new step-father, were arrested shortly after Ethan's body was found. Stacy's tragic story became known nationwide. Nathan and Stephanie Sloop were each charged with capital murder and could be sentenced to death if convicted. Alleged motive: domestic. Method: beating.

19. TAYLORSVILLE, May 26 — Heather Quast, 18, was stabbed and killed in a drug deal gone bad along the Jordan River Parkway near 3900 South and 1100 West. Jose Neri, 19, and Cristian Alzaga, 19, were both charged with murder. A homicide warrant was issued for the arrest of a third man also believed to have been involved.Alleged motive: drugs. Method: shooting.

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