months after her murder and just a few months before his
eventual arrest, Morales attended a vigil with a group of
supporters outside the taquería, calling for justice. He
told reporters, through an interpreter, of his hope her killer
would be found and brought to justice.
“We can’t find
closure until the police say what happened,” Morales said at the
The week after
Morales was arrested nearly 18 months ago, Ms. Silgüero
Guerrero’s sisters and friends staged a “ride for justice” to
bring attention to her murder. More than a dozen cars honked
their horns as the caravan drove by the victim’s Mexican
supermarket and taqueria.
convicted a co-defendant—Morales’ son—on an ‘obstruction of
justice’ charge earlier this year. A judge last summer sentenced
Bryan Morales-Rivero, to 30 months in state prison with
credit for time served while awaiting trial. According to
prosecutors, Morales-Rivero lied to police about his father’s
role in shooting and stabbing Ms.
Guerrero. There was also some indication that the
victim was planning on leaving the defendant.
Morales-Rivero initially tried to deny any knowledge of who had
committed the crime, then pointed a finger at a neighbor whom he
claimed ‘was always asking for money’. He finally implicated his
father in the homicide after Toledo police detectives brought
both suspects in for another interview eight months after the
murder. His defense attorney stated Morales-Rivero faces likely
deportation back to México once his prison term is served.
Guerrero and Morales had been together more than a decade. The
taquería has long since closed. At the time of her death,
Guerrero had branched out and become involved in
other businesses as well, but with partners other than Morales.
She had also recently celebrated her daughter’s quinceañera.
Her three children are in the custody of relatives and have
moved out of the area.
date, the trial has been delayed a number osf times, with the
postponement of several hearings. Defense attorneys have
received court approval to hire a private detective and an
expert witness. There is also a Notico of Alibi on file. Other
pre-trial expenses have included the use of interpreters during
court hearings, as Morales speaks only Spanish.
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