Police: Man dies, others stabbed in Kennewick fight

Tri-City HeraldDecember 25, 2013 

A Kennewick man is dead and two of his relatives were stabbed in a fight late Christmas Eve, police said.

Gerardo Villamar Jr., 23, died from numerous stab wounds to his upper back after emergency room doctors at Trios Health in Kennewick were unable to stabilize him, said Kennewick police.

Police said Villamar was taken to the hospital after a resident in the 300 block of Second Avenue reported that several men were yelling at each other in the street at 11:52 p.m. Tuesday. The caller said they heard a bottle break and saw two men running away.

Erick Nieto, 23, Rafael Nieto, 24, and Jose A. Vazquez-Villanueva, 39, all of Kennewick, were jailed for rioting, police said. Police also are looking for another person who may have been involved.

Villamar and Vazquez-Villanueva are cousins of the Nietos, Kennewick Police Sgt. Mike Genack told the Herald. None of the three men who was arrested were cooperating with police.

“Basically, they’re not telling us what really happened,” Genack said.

Erick Nieto, who arrived at Trios at the same time as Villamar, was treated and later released for two non-life threatening stab wounds in his upper left arm and right hand, police said.

Police said Rafael Nieto, Erick Nieto’s brother, was contacted while walking away from the emergency room and told police a fight happened in the street near Second Avenue and Beech Street.

Vazquez-Villanueva arrived at the hospital at 12:30 a.m. Wednesday with two stab wounds in his upper right arm, police said. He was treated and released after the wounds were found not to be life-threatening.

Erick Nieto also has an outstanding felony warrant and Rafael Nieto has an outstanding misdemeanor warrant, police said.

Kennewick Police Department detectives worked through the night and day conducting interviews and investigating the crime scene, police said.

Police don’t know what caused the late-night fight, but heard the people involved might have been at a party on Date Street earlier in the evening, Genack said.

Police said they haven’t found anyone who might have been at the party to cooperate.

Police did find a gray Pontiac on Wednesday afternoon that may have been used to take the suspects to the hospital and officers plan to impound it, Genack said.

Several knives also were found but police don’t know if any of them were used to kill Villamar, Genack said.

Anyone with information on the incident is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 586-8477 or Kennewick police at 628-0333.

-- Geoff Folsom: 509-582-1543; gfolsom@tricityherald.com; Twitter: @GeoffFolsom

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