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JUDGE ORDERS MURDER TRIAL FOR TRANSIENT IN SHOOTING CASE

SHARE JUDGE ORDERS MURDER TRIAL FOR TRANSIENT IN SHOOTING CASE

A man accused of shooting two people at a West Central City bar last month was ordered to stand trial on a murder charge Tuesday for killing one of them.

Enrique Romero Gutierez, 29, a transient, was ordered to appear before 3rd District Judge Kenneth Rigtrup on June 15. He is charged with killing Jorge A. Amador-Villelas, 29, of Central City, during a fight at The Club, 501 W. 200 South.Witnesses testified Tuesday that Gutierez shot Amador-Villelas and Victor Sauceda while inside the bar on April 18.

"I saw an individual coming up like he was coming up from a crouch," said Joe Talakai. He said Gutierez was pointing something at Sauceda and he saw Sauceda fall. Gutierez then began chasing Amador-Villelas around a pool table, Talakai said.

"As he was chasing him, he was also firing," he said.

Talakai said he saw Amador-Villelas "lunge" toward Gutierez, who shot him two or three times. Gutierez then walked out the front door.

The motive for the shooting remained unclear following the preliminary hearing. The three men were apparently involved in fights before the shootings occurred, but witnesses appeared uncertain about who was fighting with whom.

Sauceda denied punching Gutierez before the shooting despite testimony from others in the bar who said that he did. He said he and Amador-Villelas had been in an argument with others in the bar that night but were not involved in a fight. Sauceda said he and Amador-Villelas were friends, despite a fight they'd had a week earlier.

Defense attorney Brooke Wells reminded Sauceda of a statement he gave to police when he said Gutierez was not aiming the gun at him when he shot him. Wells quoted Sauceda from the transcribed interview: "If he would have aimed and shot, he would have killed me there easily."

"He (Sauceda) thought the defendant had become upset and shot him but intended to shoot the other victim," testified Salt Lake Police Detective David Timmerman.

Medical Examiner Dr. Todd Grey said Amador-Villelas was moving around when he was shot but could not answer Wells' question about whether the shots were fired wildly without aim or intentionally. The victim was shot in the arm, chest and buttocks.

Amador-Villelas was legally drunk and also had cocaine in his system when he was killed.

Gutierez was arrested shortly after the shooting just a few blocks away from the bar. He had blood on his hands and face, according to police. As he left the bar, he allegedly threw a bloody Raiders jacket underneath a parked car in an apparent attempt to hide it from officers, police said.

Gutierez is also charged with aggravated assault in connection with the shooting of Sauceda.