Serial killings suspect Wesley Brownlee faces 4 more murder charges

STOCKTON, Calif. — A man suspected in Northern California serial killings has been charged in four additional slayings this week, bringing the total to seven deaths since April 2021, authorities said.

The San Joaquin County District Attorney’s Office filed additional murder charges against Wesley Brownlee, who was arrested in October when he “was out hunting” for another possible victim in Stockton, California, the police said at the time.

The shootings terrorized the Central Valley city of Stockton earlier this year as police searched for a man clad in black who appeared to be “on a mission” as he hunted victims for ambush-style shootings. He was also tied to violence in Alameda County.

Three of the four slayings listed in court documents Tuesday have already been disclosed by authorities — who earlier said they had linked Brownlee to the killings of six men and the wounding of a woman — but charges had not been filed.

Tuesday’s fourth case, an April 2021 slaying that brings the total to seven killings, was previously unreported.

“The San Joaquin County District Attorney’s Office continues to collaborate with our local law enforcement agencies to ensure justice for these victims,” ​​said District Attorney Tori Verber Salazar, according to The Stockton Record, part of the USA TODAY Network. “We would like to thank the community for their support and law enforcement for their diligent investigation and apprehension of the suspect.”

Brownlee was initially only charged in the deaths of three victims in Stockton: Jonathan Rodriguez Hernandez, 21, who died Aug. 30; Juan Cruz, 52, who died Sept 21; and Lawrence Lopez Sr., 54, who died Sept. 27.

The amended complaint, filed Tuesday, also charges Brownlee with the killings of Paul Yaw, 35, and Salvador Debudey Jr., 43, in Stockton, as well as the Alameda County fatal shootings of Juan Vasquez Serrano, 39, and Mervin Harmon.

He is also charged with attempted murder in the April 2021 shooting of Natasha LaTour, 46.

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Harmon had not previously been publicly linked to Brownlee’s spate of shootings. Additional details about Harmon’s death were not immediately available.

A convicted drug offender, Brownlee was barred from owning a gun and he allegedly used an unregistered “ghost gun” to carry out at least some of the slayings, police said in October after his arrest.

In January 1999, Brownlee had been sentenced to two years in prison in Alameda County, which encompasses the city of Oakland, for possessing and selling a controlled substance, the California corrections department said. He was released on parole in August 1999 after serving seven months.

Brownlee was again convicted in Alameda County in December 2001 and sentenced to three years for the same crime. He was paroled in May 2003 and discharged three years later.

Brownlee is scheduled to return to court on Jan. 3 for further arrangement.

Contributing: Hannah Workman, The Record

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