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Homicide investigation underway after body of Reno woman found in a box near Fresno

jose rodriquez.jpg

***WARNING -- THIS STORY CONTAINS GRAPHIC CONTENT***

Reno police are assisting the Dinuba Police Department after a Reno woman's body was found in a box south of Fresno, according to Officer Tim Broadway.

According to a press release from Dinuba Police, on July 8 at approximately 8 p.m. officers were dispatched to a home on a report of shots fired. When officers arrived on scene, they determined that potential victims were uncooperative. A witness in the area advised that shots were fired from a Lincoln Navigator.

Approximately a half hour later, Dinuba Police officers responded to a separate disturbance. When they arrived several suspects were seen running from the scene. Officers were able to locate a Lincoln Navigator which matched the description of the one they were looking for from the shots fired call.

Police say that suspects and possible victims remained uncooperative.

On July 9, police were dispatched to another disturbance at the same house. They arrived to meet a male who had stab wounds to his upper arm area.

The suspect, identified as Jose Anthony Rodriguez, 37, of Reno was taken into custody for the stabbing.

Shortly after the arrest, police received multiple tips that Rodriguez was storing a dead body in the Lincoln Navigator.

Police obtained a search warrant and located a 29-year-old deceased female with visible head trauma and a decomposing body.

The female was inside a cardboard box wrapped with tape.

The Reno Police Department confirmed that the woman was a Reno resident on July 9.

Reno Police Homicide Detectives responded to an apartment complex in the 3000 block of S. Virginia St. and located evidence that the homicide may have occurred inside the apartment.

Police have identified the woman as Lorena Gardner, 29, of Reno.

Jose Rodriguez is in custody in Dinuba, California.

This is still an active investigation and Reno Police are asking for anyone who may have any information about this to contact the Reno Police Department at (775) 334-2188, Secret Witness at 322-4900, www.secretwitness.com, or text the tip to 847411 (TIP 411) keyword – SW.




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