Crime

Woman claims to have recorded statement about deaths of three Pasco people

Tri-City Herald

A defendant in an unrelated criminal case claims to have information about the 2014 deaths of three Pasco people in a Benton County cornfield.

Benton County Prosecutor Andy Miller told the court Thursday about an audio recording of a person making a statement that might be considered a confession.

Miller said he has not yet listened to the tape and doesn’t know if it will be of any value to his case against Francisco J. Resendez Miranda.

However, if they give the tape to defense counsel to listen, then prosecutors should be able to do the same, he said.

Resendez Miranda is charged with three counts of aggravated first-degree murder. His Superior Court trial is set for Nov. 2.

Prosecutors allege the Umatilla man had a role in the fatal shootings of Abigail Torres-Renteria, 23, Victoria Torres, 19, and David Perez-Saucedo, 22.

Their bodies were found Aug. 9, 2014, on farmland off Nine Canyon Road. Torres-Renteria was almost nine months pregnant.

Attorney Bob Thompson contacted Miller on Monday about a client who may know something about the case.

Prosecutors reached a plea agreement with that woman in order to get the recording, Miller said.

Details about the woman’s unrelated case were not disclosed.

The recording was made with the woman’s cellphone, and the person who is talking might not have been aware they were being recorded, Miller said.

He added that the recording likely violated Washington’s privacy laws, but prosecutors in this case face no criminal liability because they weren’t involved in the initial act.

The cellphone has been handed over to Richland police to download the conversation.

Kristin M. Kraemer: 509-582-1531; kkraemer@tricityherald.com; Twitter: @KristinMKraemer

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