Richland man suspected in death of 9-month-old waives extradition

June 12, 2013 

— A Richland man will return to Benton County from California within the next 10 days to face a manslaughter charge for allegedly causing the death of his girlfriend's 9-month-old daughter.

Jose Luis Aguilar, 36, waived extradition during a court hearing Wednesday in California, said Benton County Prosecutor Andy Miller.

Prosecutors now have 10 days to get Aguilar from the West Valley Detention Center in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., back to Benton County.

The Herald learned Wednesday that Aguilar is a Level 1 sex offender, though it still is unclear where and when his crime was committed, Richland police said. A Level 1 sex offender is considered the least likely to re-offend, with a Level 3 the most likely.

Officials have said Aguilar has a criminal history, though they didn't go into specifics.

Because of security reasons, Miller declined to give a timeframe for when Aguilar would return.

Aguilar was arrested on a Greyhound bus in Barstow, Calif., on June 8, a day after his girlfriend, Jennifer Reedy, found her daughter, Serenity Reedy, dead in her crib.

Richland police tracked Aguilar to California using the GPS in his cellphone, officials said. They believe he was fleeing to Mexico.

Serenity died from "abusive head trauma" and she had a cut and injuries to her vaginal area, according to an arrest affidavit. An autopsy performed by Dr. Carl Wigren, a forensic pathologist from Seattle, showed Serenity also had two separate skull fractures and bleeding in part of her brain.

Aguilar shared a house at 29 Log Lane in Richland with Serenity's mother, Jennifer Reedy, officials said. The two had been living together for around a month.

Reedy told police she woke up around 5 a.m. June 7 and found Aguilar gone, the affidavit said. Reedy's car was missing and when she called Aguilar, he said he was on his way to California.

When Reedy went to check on Serenity around 9:45 a.m., she was cold and purple, the affidavit said. Serenity was pronounced dead at the house a short time later.

Aguilar told police Serenity fell from a couch 15 inches off the ground while he was taking care of her, the affidavit said. Wigren told authorities that Serenity's head injuries could not have come from a fall from a couch.

Prosecutors will re-evaluate Aguilar's case to see if any additional charges should be filed.

Tri-City Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service