Man accused of decapitating grandmother and fleeing with her head

The 23-year-old suspect was taken into custody over the weekend

Michelle Del Rey
Tuesday 07 November 2023 00:41 GMT
23-year-old Luis Aroyo-López has been accused of decapitating his 64-year-old grandmother.
23-year-old Luis Aroyo-López has been accused of decapitating his 64-year-old grandmother. (Santa Rosa Police Department)

A California man has been arrested for allegedly decapitating his grandmother, authorities confirmed in a press release.

Luis Aroyo-López, 23, was taken into custody in San Francisco over the weekend, according to the Sonoma County Sheriff’s jail inmate search. Officials previously said that the suspect was 24.

KRON4, an affiliate of MyNetworkTV, reported that someone matching Mr Aroyo-López’s description was spotted by San Francisco Police officers at Transbay Terminal, a city bus station, around 7.53am on Saturday.

Multiple police officers worked to detain the suspect, who was taken into custody by San Francisco Police Department officials. The Santa Rosa Police Department was later alerted of the arrest.

He’s being held without bail in the county’s Main Adult Detention Facility on one count of felony murder and another felony count of violating the terms of his supervisory period. His initial court date has been set for Tuesday at 8.30am.

On Thursday, officials arrived at a residence in the 2500-block of Pomo Trail in Santa Rosa, Calif., about 55 miles north of San Francisco, and discovered a deceased adult female who had been decapitated. The woman was later identified as 64-year-old Elvia Arroyo López, the suspect’s grandmother.

Her head was not located at the residence, officials said. Authorities initially thought Mr Aroyo-López “may still be in possession of it,” according to a press release. On Saturday, officials recovered the head on the south bank of Santa Rosa Creek, adjacent to Prince Memorial Greenway, around 7.30pm.

The head was transported to the Sonoma County Coroner’s Office for examination, police said. Authorities have not determined what murder weapon was used in the incident.

“Multiple weapons were recovered from the residence,” police said. “However the items will need to undergo further examination before we can definitely identify the murder weapon.”

Authorities named Mr Aroyo-López, a Santa Rosa resident, as a suspect after conducting an initial investigation, which suggested that he allegedly killed his grandmother before fleeing to San Francisco.

The SRPD Violent Investigations team interviewed anyone who potentially had information about the incident, authorities said.

The Independent has reached out to the Santa Rosa Police Department for additional information. A previous news release noted that officials intended to reveal more details following his capture.

“We do not have details regarding his arrest at this time,” a statement distributed on Saturday read.

Mr Aroyo-López had previously been released from state prison and placed on Postrelease Community Supervision. He was imprisoned for charges including assault with a deadly weapon and weapons possession charges, which police noted were unrelated to the incident.

A GoFundMe page created for a woman with the same name as the victim has so far raised about $3,500 out of a $10,000 goal to cover funeral expenses.

“She was a loving person and she adored so dearly all her grandchildren,” a description for the fundraiser states. “She didn’t deserve what was done to her. Her death has impacted our family greatly and we are seeking for help during this time of despair.”

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