4 charged in W. Kensington clerk's death

January 31, 2012 8:50:19 PM PST
A total of four people have now been charged in connection with the murder of a clerk inside a store in the West Kensington section of Philadelphia.

29-year-old Reyna Aguirre Alonso told her family members she feared for her life after being interviewed by police about being witness to the murder of 22-year-old Luis Chevere, believed to be the victim of a drug turf war.

It was a murder which 22-year-old Jorge 'J Rock' Aldea would ultimately be charged with.

But before he could be arrested, authorities say he would hatch a plan to get rid of the witness.

"He is believed to be the mastermind and the brains of this operation," Philadelphia Police Captain James Clark said.

Just hours after an arrest warrant was issued and his picture released to news outlets, police now say that Aldea, a notorious drug dealer with a long history of violence, ordered the mob-style hit be carried out.

"It was believed by these killers that she had cooperated with the homicide unit and as a result of that, they actually put a hit on her. They organized this plan to kill her and to make it look like a robbery," Clark said.

Alonso was murdered on January 23rd at the Caribe Mini Market on the 3300 block of Mutter Street where she worked.

Police say 16-year-old Shawn Poindexter of the 5700 block of North Front Street was the triggerman, 20-year-old Raymond Soto of the 800 block of East Hilton Street provided the murder weapon and helped carry out the operation and Aldea's girlfriend, pregnant with child, 19-year-old Eliana Vasquez of the 3200 block of Kip Street, drove the getaway car.

Aldea would ultimately flee to New York, but he would prove no match for the Philadelphia Police, FBI Fugitive Task Force, and the NYPD who found him hiding in the bathroom of a sixth floor Bronx apartment last Friday.

"Homicide unit did a very, very good job putting all the pieces together; it's good to have this resolved, however, it doesn't bring her back," Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey said.

Authorities say Aldea is expected to be extradited back to Philadelphia from New York on Friday.

Alonso's relatives say that her life was working at the Caribe Mini Market, where she worked seven days a week from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.

"She was a very loving person, she would bend backwards to help anybody; she was well loved in the area and it's not fair what they did to her," brother-in-law Henry Cabrera said.

Alonso's sister and brother-in-law say they will be taking her body back to her native Mexico on Thursday where her family will be holding her funeral.