Arrest warrants issued for Avon robbery suspects |

Arrest warrants issued for Avon robbery suspects

Steve Lynn
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

AVON, Colorado ” Avon police are looking for three men accused of wielding kitchen knives and tying up a man, his wife and an employee during a robbery at Castaneda’s Mexican Market Friday.

A judge signed arrest warrants for Wilian Daneri Hernandez, 23, Noel Murillo, 22, and a man named Elder, Avon police spokeswoman Krista Jaramillo wrote in an e-mail. Elder’s last name is unknown, Jaramillo said.

The men were “most likely” illegal immigrants and had been living in the Vail Valley for several months, Avon Police Chief Brian Kozak said.

Several friends of the men said the suspects were headed for Mexico, then Honduras, where police believe they are from, Kozak said.

“The chances are very good that they’re not in Colorado any longer,” Kozak said.

Castaneda’s Mexican Market is at 51 Beaver Creek Place, across the street from City Market. Shortly after the store opened at 8 a.m. Friday, three men walked in and loitered for about 15 minutes, Kozak has said.

Jose Castaneda, the store’s owner, said he was doing paperwork when the men came in the store.

The men tied up Castaneda, his wife, Maricela, and an employee and demanded money, Castaneda said. Another employee locked herself in the bathroom, Castaneda said.

Castaneda said he gave the men his money because he thought the men might hurt someone.

“We said, ‘OK it’s fine, take all the money,'” said Castaneda, who declined to say how much was taken.

The men tied up the employees’ hands behind their backs, took some money and left, Kozak has said. Castaneda called police.

Hernandez and Murillo had worked for temporary employment agencies in the valley and had cashed their paychecks at the market in the past, Kozak said.

Castaneda said he wasn’t worried when the men came into the store because they were regular customers. Now he’s less likely to trust people, he said.

“It was scary. You think, ‘What is better, your life or the money?'” he said. “Maybe the money you can make back in time.”

Avon police interviewed at least 25 people and one Avon officer worked 35 hours straight on the case, Kozak said. Avon police went to Denver to work with police there, but the suspects had already left, Kozak said.

The suspects were last seen in a silver Chevrolet Impala, but when that car was stopped in Denver, two different men were in it, Kozak said.

“We just missed them,” Kozak said about the robbery suspects.

The suspects are believed to be armed and dangerous, Jaramillo said. Call 911 if you come in contact with them, she said.

Hernandez is 160 pounds and 5 feet, 6 inches tall; Murillo, also known as Jairo Murillo, is 180 pounds and 5 feet, 8 inches tall; Elder is 180 pounds and 5 feet, 4 inches tall, she said.

All men have brown eyes and black hair, she said.

The men are wanted on charges of aggravated robbery, attempted second-degree kidnapping, theft and menacing, all felonies, she said.

Anyone with information should call the Avon Police Department at (970) 748-4040 or the Vail Communications Center at (970) 479-2200, extension 0, she said.

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