Kannapolis murder victims identified

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 2, 2009

By Sarah Nagem
KANNAPOLIS ó Police have identified the two people who were shot and killed at a home Saturday.
Lorena Manzanares Soto, 27, of 702 W. Eighth St., Kannapolis, and Javier Jiminez Mendez, 24, of 2210-B Brookside Drive, Kannapolis, were killed.
Police said Soto was the wife of 35-year-old Joaquin Alvarez Rios, who apparently took off Saturday night. Police are still looking for him.
Investigators don’t think Rios was involved in a shooting in Charlotte Monday morning, Kannapolis Police Lt. Ken Jackson said.
Kannapolis Police sent shell casings from the double murder scene to Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police for ballistics tests, Jackson said.
“There was no match,” he said.
On Monday, a Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police officer stopped a Honda, and a man in the car shot at the officer.
The officer was not hurt, and he returned gunfire.
Police thought the two cases might have been related.
On Saturday, Kannapolis Police discovered the bodies of Soto and Mendez in the West Eighth Street home after Rios’ family in Kannapolis called 911 around 10:30 p.m. His sister said Rios had dropped off his three children and said he had done something bad, according to police.Jackson said Rios is from Mexico, and he has family throughout North Carolina.
“We really don’t know a motive at this point, and we probably won’t until we get him in custody, if he talks to us,” he said.
Police think the 10-year-old daughter of Rios and Soto witnessed the shooting.
A police interview with the girl led to developments in the case, Jackson said, but he did not provide details.
Rios and Soto’s other two children are 4 and 5 years old, Jackson said.