STOCKTON (CBS13) – A couple is accused of a grisly crime, killing a man and then dismembering the body. Stockton police say the suspects left a trail of blood that led them to the remains.
Stockton police say they believe Michael Shane Jones was murdered inside his home by his two roommates.
“I think it’s pretty crazy,” said Mike, a neighbor.
Mike just found out he lives just one home away from where Stockton police say Bryan Cook and Valentina Paz killed their roommate.
A tip led police to the home on Mist Trail Place. Investigators say someone told them a murder took place there, but when officers arrived they found no one there — only a trail of blood left behind.
Hours later, police tracked down Cook at a campsite in Groveland, as well as the dismembered remains of Jones inside Cook’s car.
Police say Jones’ torso was burning in a camp fire.
The trio’s former neighbor, who didn’t want to be identified, says she spoke with Paz a lot.
“It was very scary to know somebody that you would talk to and visit with would be involved in any way,” she said.
The neighbor says it was just a few days ago when Paz asked if she could watch her dog, because she and Cook had to move.
“She was saying they had to do it real quick,” the neighbor said.
At the time, she didn’t think anything of it, but now believes the move is connected to the murder.
Mike says Stockton has a reputation, but this murder stands out.
“A lot of stuff happens in Stockton, but that’s one of the crazier stories I’ve ever heard,” he said.
Police don’t know exactly why Jones was murdered, but are working through possible motive and are trying to pin down exactly what happened inside the home.
Investigators say another roommate was questioned and released. Paz was arrested Saturday in Tuolumne County.
Police aren’t saying who made the phone call that led them to the home.