SANTA MARIA – Police have arrested an additional four suspects in a homicide investigation that began Monday, March 18, when investigators discovered the body of Anthony Ibarra, 28, in the back of a U-Haul truck on a residential street in Orcutt.
Santa Maria police, along with deputies from the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department and FBI agents, arrested David Murillo Maldonado, 55, Thursday afternoon at the County Probation Department, on suspicion of murder, police said.
Minutes after Maldonado’s arrest, two additional suspects, Santos Manuel Sauceda, 33, and Robert Sosa, 19, were taken into custody during a traffic stop in the 700 block of East Central. Both men have booked into County Jail on charges of murder.
Later in the day Thursday, a fourth suspect, Anthony Jesus Solis, 28, was also arrested without incident during a vehicle stop in the 1000 block of North Broadway. He has also been booked at County Jail on suspicion of Ibarra’s murder, according to police.
Earlier in the week, police arrested Ramon Maldonado, 37, Carmen Cardenas, 28, Pedro Torres, 54, and Reyes Gonzales, 42, in connection with the murder. Gonzales is a documented Santa Maria street gang member, and investigators believe the slaying was gang-related.
The Santa Barbara County District Attorney’s Office has said it may seek the death penalty for several of the individuals arrested for the murder. The investigation is ongoing and police have released few details about Ibarra’s death.
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