First Posted: 11/6/2009
A man accused of murdering four people in Mount Airy Sunday was in the U.S. illegally and had been deported previously, an official with a federal agency confirmed Friday.
Marcos Chavez Gonzalez, 26, of 146 Southridge Road, re-entered the country after his deportation, according to Barbara Gonzalez of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), an agency of the Department of Homeland Security.
In reacting to this disclosure Friday afternoon, Mount Airy Police Chief Dale Watson indicated that it makes the circumstances behind Sundays fatal shootings all the more disturbing.
Its just very troublesome that he was deported at one point and then did get access back into our country, Watson said of the alleged murderer and his illegal immigration status. The police chief added that the ability of such individuals to re-enter the U.S. is a major problem for law enforcement in trying to keep communities safe.
It has the potential to create issues like were dealing with today, Watson said in reference to the suspects alleged murder of the four victims using a high-powered assault rifle. They were shot in the parking lot of two Worth Street businesses, Woods TV Inc. and Chilton Insurance Group Inc.
Watson said Friday that city police still have not arrived at a motive for the crime, despite numerous contacts with witnesses to the shootings and others linked to those involved. Several possibilities are being investigating, including one that the deaths resulted from a love affair gone bad, with authorities saying they do not believe it was a random event.
After the incident, Marcos Chavez Gonzalez fled to Henry County, Va., where he was arrested at a Super 8 motel early Monday. The convicted felon subsequently was returned to North Carolina and is being held without privilege of bond on four counts of first-degree murder.
Gonzalez was imprisoned after a 2002 conviction in Surry County for kidnapping a minor and a probation violation, with the felony kidnapping violation requiring him to register as a sex offender. He was released in January 2007 after a total of nearly five years behind bars.
A detainer was issued for Gonzalez following his imprisonment, which is filed in cases in which some other agency seeks to take custody of an inmate upon his or her release from the North Carolina prison system.
In this case, it was a request from ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement), said Keith Acree, director of public affairs for the state penal department. The feds had an interest in him as part of a deportation case, Acree explained.
Barbara Gonzalez, who handles ICE activities in North Carolina, said that Marcos Gonzalez was in fact deported after his release from prison, only to illegally re-enter the country.
ICE has lodged a detainer against Mr. Gonzalez for immigration violations, she added Friday of his present status.
If the illegal immigrant were to receive a prison sentence in North Carolina for the latest crime, under the new detainer we will reinstate his prior removal once he is transferred into our custody, the ICE official said.
Assuming such an incarceration occurs, he will be turned over to ICE custody upon the completion of his prison term, she added.
Those killed Sunday included brothers Javier Manuel Martinez, 21, and Juan Manuel Martinez, 26; their cousin, Victor Alfonso Martinez-Jimemiz, 22; and Marcos Oviedo Aguilar, 22, a friend of the three. All lived in the Mount Airy-Surry County area.
Contact Tom Joyce at [email protected] or at 719-1924.