Crime

Hanford police reopened a cold case homicide, and made this arrest

James Vargas, 26, was arrested by Hanford Police Wednesday in connection with a 2016 homicide.
James Vargas, 26, was arrested by Hanford Police Wednesday in connection with a 2016 homicide. Hanford Police Department

Hanford police on Thursday reported an arrest in connection with a homicide of a man who was gunned down in March 2016.

James Vargas, 26, was booked Wednesday on suspicion of murder in the slaying of Eric Parker, 30. Vargas was also booked on an attempted murder charge against a second victim.

Parker was found dead by officers late on March 16, 2016, after officers rushed to the 600 block of South Redington Street and found two gunshot victims. Detectives determined the shootings were gang-related, but reached a dead end in attempts to solve the crime.

In May, detectives reopened the case and reached out to several witnesses, and that led them to Vargas. Police say the shooting was done for the benefit of a criminal street gang and that Vargas is a Norteño gang member with an extensive criminal history.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call detective Ryan Tomey at 559-585-4725.

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