Medford Police have arrested Jose “Pepe” Valencia-Gaona just before noon today and charged with the murder of Maria Rodriguez last Sunday. His bail is set at $1 million.
Acting on a tip that Valencia was in the area of Clark Street and the railroad tracks, personnel from the Criminal Investigation Division, MADGE, SWAT, and patrol responded to the area and took him into custody without incident just north of Clark Street on the railroad tracks.
Police believe the murder was premeditated because suspect allegedly waited in the bushes outside Rodriguez’s apartment and attacked the woman when she returned, stabbing her multiple times and then menacing witnesses with the knife as they tried to intervene.
Additional charges are pending following a review by the District Attorney’s office.