PRESS RELEASE FROM THE GRANT COUNTY SHERIFF'S DEPT: Grant County Detectives have arrested and charged a Mattawa man in connection with the Oct. 16 homicide near Mattawa. Jose Abilion Aguilar Aguilar (two last names are Aguilar), age 35 of 704 Thunderbird Way, Mattawa, was arrested without incident around 8 p.m. last night in Mattawa. He is lodged in the Grant County Jail on suspicion of:
First degree murder Alien in possession of a firearm Felony harassment Intimidating a witness
Aguilar is suspected of the Oct. 16 murder of Carmelita Lopez Santos of Yakima. Santos' body was found by a hunter in a recreation area off of Road 26 Southwest. Santos' family used the sheriff's office crimetips email to send information that Carmelita was missing. The investigation revealed Aguilar and Santos had been in a romantic relationship and Aguilar was allegedly upset when Santos broke off that relationship. "The closing of this investigation was due to a huge amount if teamwork and skilled investigation, including cell phone data and interviews with several people," said Sheriff Tom Jones. Jones credits his deputies and detectives, the Interagency Narcotics Enforcement Team, Yakima Police and the U.S. Marshals Service with teaming up to make the arrest happen.