Steven Gale, 27, a Reno resident, was shot and killed at about 12:30 a.m. on Sunday as he walked with some friends in the 500 block of California Avenue, according to Reno police. Gale was with another man and a woman when four people approached them and tried to steal the female companion’s purse. Gale and the other man tried to stop the robbery when Gale was shot in the back. He was later pronounced dead.
Friends who were with Gale at the time of his murder described the attackers as four Hispanic males driving a white, four-door sedan with tinted windows.
The suspects and the vehicle matched the description of those involved in another crime, committed a few hours earlier near Virginia Lake in Reno. At 9:34 p.m. Saturday, a 37-year-old Reno man was robbed as he walked near 1980 Lakeside Drive. On Monday, four people turned themselves in to Reno police and were later arrested for that crime. They are brothers 21-year-old Jacob and 19-year-old Luis Sanchez of Reno, 22-year-old Aurora Rodriguez-Perez of Reno and a 13-year-old male resident of Reno.
Police do not believe there are any other suspects or vehicles for this series of crimes. After interviewing the suspects they were charged with the armed robbery at Virginia Lake. All of the adults are being held on $100,000 cash-only bail.
Reno police Lt. Mohammad Rafaqat said the suspects might have gang affiliation but that the crimes were motivated by robbery. In working with Carson City police, where the suspects were caught on surveillance at a Walmart and where similar robbery crimes occurred, Rafaqat said additional charges will be forthcoming.
Anyone with additional information is encouraged to contact the Reno Police Department Robbery/Homicide Unit at 334-2188 or remain anonymous by calling Secret Witness at 322-4900 any time.