On the night of Saturday, June 17, Montgomery County Chief of Police J. Thomas Manger announced the arrests of three suspects responsible for the shooting deaths of 17-year-old Shadi Adi Najjar and 18-year-old Artem S. Ziberov that occurred on June 5, while the victims were inside a blue Honda Civic parked in the 8200 block of Gallery Court in Montgomery Village.
Earlier on June 17, Edgar Garcia-Gaona, age 24, of the 100 block of Lamont Lane in Gaithersburg, Roger Garcia, age 19, of the 19500 block of Frederick Road in Germantown, and Jose Ovilson Canales-Yanez, age 25, of the 18400 block of Cape Jasmine Way in Gaithersburg, were arrested and charged with two counts of first-degree murder and two counts of conspiracy to commit first-degree murder.
Involvement from members of the community helped facilitate this investigation, which led to today’s arrests.
During the investigation it was learned from a friend of Najjar’s that Najjar had committed a drug-related robbery in December of 2016 or January of 2017, where it was rumored that he had stolen drugs from a female during a drug transaction.
It was also learned from the same friend that just prior to this death, Najjar told the friend that he was planning to sell a graduation ticket to an individual named Roger Garcia. That was the last communication Najjar had prior to his death. It occurred at approximately 10:15 p.m.
Detectives developed that Roger Garcia’s brother, Edgar Garcia-Gaona, was shot on February 10, 2017 during a botched drug deal, also in Montgomery Village. Garcia-Gaona was reported to have been carrying a weapon and did exchange gunshots with his assailants.
A friend of Edgar Garcia-Gaona, Jose Canales-Yanez, was determined to be the boyfriend (now possibly husband) of Kara Yanez. Kara Yanez is believed to be the victim of the rumored drug-related robbery committed by Najjar. In a report filed by Kara Yanez on December 14, 2016, Yanez stated that she was approached by a blue Honda Civic while she was walking, and a front-seat passenger grabbed her Apple iPad. She was dragged by the car for approximately 50 feet.
The developing motive for the shooting is that it was in retaliation for Najjar’s robbery of Kara Yanez. At this time, it is unknown if there was a motive for the killing of Ziberov, or if his death was incidental to the killing of Najjar.
“Although detectives have made these three arrests, this by no means should be interpreted that the investigation has concluded,” said Chief Manger. “These most recent developments are the result of the community taking an active role in this investigation. It is believed that, considering the progress made over the past 36 hours, there are additional sources of information who have yet to come forward.”
Anyone with information is encouraged to call the Major Crimes Division at 240-773-5070. Those wishing to remain anonymous, may call Crime Solvers of Montgomery County, which is offering a reward of up to $10,000 for any information that leads to additional arrests and indictments. Tipsters can call Crime Solvers of Montgomery County toll-free at 1-866-411-TIPS (8477).
All three suspects arrested on June 17, are being held without bond. They are currently scheduled to have bail review hearings on Monday, June 19 at 1 p.m.
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