Tahoe killer hid in closet, reports say
November 21, 2006
A housekeeper’s estranged boyfriend hid in the closet of an eighth-floor room at Horizon Casino Resort and bludgeoned her with a hammer, court records stated.
Authorities found Jazmin Gonzalez-Morgado, 22, dead on the floor of room 806.
Ramiro Valasquez-Galicia said he wanted to tape Gonzalez’s mouth shut so he could talk to her and she could listen, according to an affidavit at Tahoe Township Justice Court.
But once she entered the room, things got out of hand so quickly that Galicia used the hammer to kill her, records stated.
Gonzalez had a restraining order barring Galicia from the Horizon.
Evan Garcia, who is suspected of helping Galicia enter the hotel, told investigators he left the room at 5 a.m. Sunday and wasn’t with Galicia when the murder happened. When he returned to the room on the eighth floor where Gonzalez worked regularly, he saw the body and told hotel staff Gonzalez needed medical attention, records stated.
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Authorities determined Gonzalez was dead at the scene.
Besides the body, a bloody hammer and scissors were found, along with two rolls of duct tape, a utility razor and a wig, according to court records.
Douglas County Sheriff’s Lt. Steve Orr called the murder “brutal.” Blood spatter was on the walls near her body and “copious amounts of blood” were located near her head, the affidavit stated.
After the murder Galicia, 35, walked into the Royal Valhalla Motor Lodge at the corner of Stateline Avenue and Lakeshore Boulevard and asked to use the phone. He called South Lake Tahoe Police Department, saying he wanted to turn himself in, a police officer said.
Galicia was expected to appear in El Dorado County Superior Court on Tuesday afternoon where he would have been read his rights and told of the extradition process to Douglas County. However, his court appearance was pushed to today.
Garcia, 23, did appear in court. Through an interpreter, Garcia said he understood his rights and requested a specific type of attorney, but added he didn’t have much money.
“I’d like to see if I can get a human rights attorney,” he said. Garcia also asked for a Mexican consulate to be apprised of his situation.
In interviews with investigators, Garcia said Galicia had frequently asked him for help to get inside the Horizon. Garcia rented the room Friday for three days and told investigators he used the room for a birthday party for his absent girlfriend, who was in Mexico.
The two notes written by Galicia explained he was solely responsible for the murder, but it wasn’t enough to keep Garcia from being charged with suspicion of accessory to murder and conspiracy, according to court records.
A friend and roommate of Gonzalez told authorities Galicia appeared at the hotel about two months ago. The friend, Marcos Santibanez, intercepted Galicia, who said if “Gonzalez did not come back to him, he was going to kill her,” court records stated.
Although autopsy reports are not in, investigators believe Gonzalez died of stab wounds and blunt-force trauma.