Case Update: Three Arrested In Disappearances of Audrey Moran & Jonathan Reynoso, Case Now A Homicide Investigation

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October 16, 2020:

DNA results have officially confirmed the identities of the human remains located in the Coachella Valley as being that of Audrey Moran and Jonathan Reynoso. Three more individuals have also been arrested in relation to the murders: Adilene Ines Castaneda, aged 28; Aaron Fernando Bernal, aged 28; and Eric Rios, aged 31. They, along with the three defendants arrested back in June 2020, face a series of charges and have plead not guilty in court.

June 30, 2020:

Investigators have filed charges against the three men arrested in relation to the disappearances of Audrey Moran and Jonathan Reynoso. Riverside County District Attorney Mike Hestrin shared that Jesus Ruiz Jr. has been charged with two counts of accessory to murder after the fact; Manuel Rios is charged with two counts of murder with a special circumstance of killing a witness; and Abraham Fregoso has been charged with one count of murder and a special circumstance of killing a witness.

In regards to the special circumstance charges against Fregoso and Rios, a spokesperson for the District Attorney’s Office said they’re in relation to the killing of Moran, and that the charges make both men eligible for the death penalty. However, there has been no decision on whether or not that sentence will be pursued.

It has also been revealed that investigators believe they have found Moran and Reynoso’s remains, which they describe as having been located “out here in the valley”. They are currently performing DNA tests on the remains to confirm that they do, in fact, belong to the couple.

June 28, 2020:

The Riverside County Sheriff’s Department has announced that three men have been arrested for murder in connection with the disappearances of 26-year-old Audrey Moran and 28-year-old Jonathan Reynoso. The suspects – Manuel Rios, aged 28, of Coachella, California; Jesus Ruiz Jr., aged 41, of Stockton, California; and Abraham Fregoso, aged 32, of Indio, California – were arrested by the Sheriff’s Department’s Homicide Unit on June 27, 2020.

In a news release, investigators revealed that they had received information, which led them to connect the three suspects to the disappearances. However, specifics surrounding the arrests have not been released, and they have not shared how they know the couple were killed.

Audrey Moran and Jonathan Reynoso were last seen alive on May 10, 2017. That evening, Audrey had told her sister that she was heading out to pick up Jonathan, who she said had been out in Brawley, California with friends. Audrey was reported missing a few days later, on May 12, after her family failed to get in contact with her, despite numerous attempts, and the investigation into the pair’s disappearances began.

Stories of the Unsolved will update this post as more details emerge.

Image Credit: Patch

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