Crime

Third suspect in beating death of homeless man arrested at high school

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Witnessing a crime and reporting it can be just as frightening as being the victim of a crime. Here’s what you should do if you witness illegal activity.

A third suspect was arrested Monday morning in the beating death of a homeless man last month

Samuel Cervantes, 18, was arrested at his high school, Elliot Alternative Education Center, at about 9 a.m., according to Modesto Police.

He is the third suspect arrested on suspicion of murder in the death of 63-year-old Jace Decker at Garrison Park, northwest of Orangeburg Avenue and Carver Road on Aug. 10.

Police say Cervantes, along with 25-year-old Ruben Rosales and 21-year-old Matthew Arguello, who were previously arrested, attacked Decker because they erroneously believed he was a sex offender.

“Jace was viciously attacked by the two suspects, without warning, and he pleaded with the attackers to stop just before he was rendered unconscious,” Modesto Police said in a press release.

Decker lost consciousness after the attack and died a week and a half later.

Police said the suspects are known criminal street gang members and the attacks is believed to be gang motivated.

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Erin has been covering breaking news and crime at The Modesto Bee since 2010. She is a Humboldt State graduate and resides in Oakdale.
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