Hanford Police have made an arrest in 2016 cold case murder investigation after they decided to reopen the case in May.
Eric Parker was shot and killed on March 16, 2016 on South Redington Street. At the time, Hanford Police determined the shooting was gang-related but without enough evidence or leads, the case went cold.
In May, they decided to reopen the case.
“When the crime originally happened it was gang-related so a lot of people were afraid to talk and give information to police at that time however a couple of years have passed and we realized they were more forthcoming with information,” said Hanford Police Sergeant Justin Vallin.
Police arrested 26-year-old James Vargas, a known gang member with an extensive criminal history.
It’s been a painful three years for Parker’s family.
“Eric did not deserve to die. Everything was just falling in place for him, he was looking for a job he just had a new baby,” said Parker’s cousin Regina.
Parker was a father of three, including a 5-month-old, at the time of his murder. His family insists he was never involved in gangs and was the glue that kept the family together.
“Eric was the peacemaker, the go-getter, the person that gathered the family together and since Eric has been gone there’s been a separation,” said Regina.