Arrest warrant issued for homicide suspect in Santa Maria | Local News
Erik Fernandez Rocha
An arrest warrant has been issued for a man suspected of fatally injuring a 29-year-old resident of Santa Maria in a shootout early Friday morning.
Shortly after 2 a.m. on Friday, officers from the Santa Maria Police Department were rushed over a report of a gunshot victim inside a vehicle near the Highway 101 overpass at North Broadway, Police Lt. Terry Flaa said.
Officers found a man who had apparently been injured in a vehicle shooting.
The victim, Frankie Placido Hernandez, 29, was pronounced dead at the scene.
Investigators have determined that the shooting occurred near a business in the 100 block of East Grant Street.
Police on Saturday named 20-year-old Erik Fernandez Rocha of Santa Maria as a suspect in the shooting and said a warrant had been issued for Rocha’s arrest.
“The exact motive for the shooting is still under investigation,” Flaa said. “This incident does not appear to be gang related.”
Detectives did not say what led them to identify Rocha as a shooting suspect.
Anyone with information about Rocha’s whereabouts or information related to the investigation can call the Santa Maria Police Department at 805.928.3781 x 2277; the information line at 805.928.3781 x2677 (COPS) or Detective Zack Robbins at 805.928.3781 x1361.
It was the fourth homicide in Santa Maria since early 2021. Another homicide occurred outside of town in the Tanglewood neighborhood, where a man shot and killed his wife.
Our professional journalists work around the clock to make sure you have the news and information you need in these uncertain times.
If you enjoy the coverage of the Noozhawk Coronavirus and the rest of the Santa Barbara County local news that we deliver to you 24/7, please become a member of our Hawks Club today.
You need us more than ever and we need your support.
We are offering special member benefits to show how much we value your trust.