MOUNT KISCO, N.Y. -- The two suspects accused of being involved in the death of Jose Sanchez were each part of the altercation in Mount Kisco, Westchester County Police Lt. Jeffrey Hunt told reporters.
“They acted in concert together at the location,” Hunt said, referring to a wooded area off of Lieto Drive where the trio socialized.
Hunt told reporters that Sanchez, a 53 year old from Honduras, was bludgeoned to death with a piece of wood. The cause of the altercation between the three is still under investigation, Hunt said, but he mentioned that alcohol was involved.
The suspects, 34-year-old Freddy Coronado-Mendez and 35-year-old Milton Ventura, have each been charged with first-degree manslaughter.
Ventura, who is from Guatemala, is in the country illegally was was previously deported once, Hunt said. Coronado-Mendez, who is also from Guatemala, was previously deported twice, police noted at a press conference on Tuesday.
Hunt also said that Ventura was arrested in Mount Kisco. Westchester County police announced his arrest earlier in the day.
Coronado-Mendez was arrested in Harrison, N.J. and is believed to have been planning to leave the region, police previously noted.
Ventura was arraigned on Wednesday night at Mount Kisco Justice Court. Communication in court was problematic, as no Spanish-language interpreter was present. An interpreter participated in the arraignment over a speaker phone but sound quality proved to be a challenge.
Mount Kisco Village Justice Mark Farrell decided to remand Ventura to Westchester County jail and did not set a bail amount. Farrell noted that Ventura's bail status can be revisited on Thursday, which is when an interpreter should be present.
Rendo said she did not enter a plea on her client's behalf because it exceeds the court's jurisdiction. However, she noted that he "adamantly denies" the allegations.
Rendo will not be representing Ventura going forward, as Farrell assigned the suspect another attorney. Before the proceeding concluded, Rendo went into Ventura's personal background, telling the court that he has three children who live in Guatemala and that he supports them.
Ventura, who has worked as a day laborer, has been living in Mount Kisco for more than five years and has been residing with his cousin for a month, Rendo said. She added that he also has family in Brewster.
The wooded area in the village, which is located off of Lieto Drive, is believed to have been used by homeless people, Hunt said. The lieutenant also told reporters that it is believed both Sanchez, Coronado-Mendez and Ventura each slept in that area at one point in time.
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