Three suspects found guilty in murder of 27-year-old D'Evelyn grad

Third suspect's July trial comes to a close

Posted 7/29/19

A Jefferson County jury has found Alicia Elena Valdez guilty of first-degree murder in the shooting of 27-year-old Andrew Jenicek, a graduate of D'Evelyn Senior High School. The shooting occurred in …

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Three suspects found guilty in murder of 27-year-old D'Evelyn grad

Third suspect's July trial comes to a close

Posted

A Jefferson County jury has found Alicia Elena Valdez guilty of first-degree murder in the shooting of 27-year-old Andrew Jenicek, a graduate of D'Evelyn Senior High School.

The shooting occurred in April 2018 when Jenicek, on his way to pick up dinner, was shot in the parking lot at 20th Avenue and Sheridan Boulevard, according to the district attorney's press release.

Valdez, 21, who was found guilty on July 18, was one of three codefendants in the case, along with 20-year-old Caleb Joseph Vigil and 21-year-old Devon Drittz Howard. Juries found both men guilty in April. Witnesses gave testimony that the three “acquired a gun (used in the shooting) and planned to use it to make money,” the release said.

Both Vigil and Howard had prior felony convictions according to the Jefferson County DA's office.

Vigil shot Jenicek while attempting to rob him, then fled the scene with Howard and Valdez in Valdez's car, the release said. Jenicek died at the scene.

Two days later, Vigil and Valdez were pulled over. The two were arrested when police found the weapon in Valdez's vehicle.

Valdez told officers she had not known the gun was in her car, claiming Vigil and Howard hid the gun from her because her father died to gun violence when she was a teenager.

During Valdez's trial, the jury watched footage of her interrogation, in which police said her car had been recorded by surveillance cameras at the scene of Jenicek's murder. Throughout the interrogation, Valdez repeatedly told officers she didn't recall the events of the crime and that she and Howard, her boyfriend of one month, were not involved in the incident.

On April 30, a jury found Howard guilty of 18 counts and Vigil guilty of 16 counts related to three incidents: Jenicek's murder, an Arvada drive-by shooting and the robbery of a Lakewood cell phone store that occurred after the murder, the release said. The counts included first degree murder and aggravated robbery.

Vigil received a sentence of life in prison plus 118 years and Howard received life in prison plus 279 years. Howard was sentenced as a habitual criminal.

After a six-day trial and daylong deliberation, Valdez was acquitted of counts related to the Arvada shooting and Lakewood robbery. Valdez's sentencing has been scheduled for Aug. 23.

Jenicek's family and D'Evelyn have established a memorial award in Jenicek's honor to be awarded yearly to a “unique individual who, like Andrew, never fails to fully express themselves.”

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