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Family seeks justice in death of Stockton mother 10 years ago this week

Juanita Maldonado was 36-years-old when she was shot and killed outside a St. Patrick's Day party in 2013

STOCKTON, Calif. — Juanita Maldonado was 36 and a mother of three when she was shot and killed in Stockton 10 years ago Saturday.

"Completely loyal, trustworthy, somebody you can depend on," said Leticia Melendez describing Maldonado.

Melendez was a close, childhood friend and godmother to Maldonado's children.

"The 10-year anniversary on March 18 is 10 years, so the case hasn't been solved yet. So obviously it affects the whole entire family. She has two other sisters and her mother and everybody clearly wants closure," said Melendez.

The shooting happened in the 1800 block of East Sonora Street close to Stribley Park in South Stockton. Maldonado was attending a St. Patrick's Day party in 2013 with her daughter Yvette.

Melendez says Juanita's daughter, Yvette, told her she was waiting for her mother by a car as the party wrapped up.

"She did see two or three boys, I'd say guys, not sure of the ages, but she did see them pass by her car and with a visible gun," said Melendez.

Yvette tried to call her mom to warn her, but her mother didn't pick up. She then heard gunshots.

"Unfortunately, Juanita was one of the people to get shot along with another person named Juan," said Melendez.

Both died. Maldonado died the day after the shooting.

"We don't know if it was targeted to the owner or the renter of the home. We don't know if it was gang related," said Melendez.

Maldonado had three children, now adults: twins Yvette and Roger, and Gabriel Flores, who has become a well-known professional boxer.

"It's hard to see the babies being born," said an emotional Melendez.

The babies are Yvette's daughter Alayna and Roger's son Rogelio born just months ago. 

"Having closure with her mom's death would be all we ask for," said Melendez.

23-year old Juan Sarrarez was the other person killed.

Stockton Crime Stoppers is offering a cash reward of up to a $10,000 for information leading to an arrest. You can remain anonymous. Call 209-946-06-00.


Stockton police believe they are close to solving a 2002 double homicide cold case

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