Detectives from the Montgomery County Police Department – Major Crimes Division have charged four suspects for the homicide of Marvin Misael Vargas-Osorio, 34, of the 400 block of North Frederick Avenue in Gaithersburg. Vargas-Osorio was located in a shallow grave in the Great Seneca Stream Valley Park on August 29.
The four suspects, Luis F. Avelar Morales, age 18, of Girard Street in Gaithersburg, Daniel Adonai Ramos, age 19, of Lost Knife Circle in Montgomery Village, Edwin E. Reyes-Martinez, age 18, of the unit block of Whetstone Drive in Gaithersburg, and Juan Espinal Rapalo, age 18, of Summit Avenue in Gaithersburg, have been charged with first-degree murder. Avelar Morales and Reyes-Martinez were 17 at the time of the murder; they both have been charged as adults in this homicide.
At the time these charges were placed, Avelar Morales, Ramos, and Rapalo were being held at the Montgomery County Correctional Facility, awaiting trial for the November 1 homicide of Roberto Gutierrez Cruz. Avelar Morales, Ramos, and Rapalo have been charged with first-degree murder for the homicide of Gutierrez Cruz. Reyes-Martinez was charged yesterday with being an accessory after the fact to first-degree murder and possession of a handgun in the November 1 homicide of Gutierrez Cruz and was also charged with first-degree murder for the homicide of Vargas-Osorio.
The homicide of Vargas-Osorio was discovered on Saturday, August 29, at approximately 10:40 a.m. 6th District officers responded to Great Seneca Stream Valley Park to assist officers from the Maryland-National Capital Park Police, Montgomery County Division, after human remains were found in a shallow grave by individuals participating in a managed hunt in the park. The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (OCME) in Baltimore ruled this death a homicide due to multiple sharp instrument stab wounds.
Photos of the victim’s clothing and personal effects were released to the public and detectives received information that the victim was Vargas-Osorio; medical records confirmed his identity.
This month, a witness to the homicide came forward to police and investigators were able to identify the four suspects based on information provided by the witness.
Investigators believe that the homicide of Vargas-Osorio and the November 1 homicide of Gutierrez Cruz are gang related and that the suspects are associated with the MS-13 gang. These homicide investigations are ongoing and therefore additional information will not be released.
Note: Avelar Morales and Reyes-Martinez were not adults at the time of the murder and therefore their mugshots are not being released.
Juan Espinal Rapalo