Another suspect at large in murder

Daily Planet Wire Service
Wednesday October 23, 2002

NEWARK — Newark police said today they are looking for a fourth person in connection with the slaying of a 17-year-old boy who sometimes passed as a girl. 

Lt. Tom Milner said police investigators are trying to locate a person named "Jason'' who apparently attended an Oct. 3 party where Edward "Eddie'' Araujo of Newark was allegedly killed. Milner did not release Jason's last name or provide any other descriptive information. 

“If there is a Jason, we will, in fact, find him,” Milner said. “Jason needs to come forward and cooperate fully.” 

On Friday, Michael William Magidson, 22, of Fremont and Jose Antonio Merel, 22, and Jaron Chase Nabors, 19, both of Newark were charged with one count each of murder, along with a special hate-crime enhancement. If the men are convicted, the hate-crime clause could add up to four years to each sentence. 

The men are scheduled to return to Alameda County Superior Court in Fremont Thursday for possible arraignment. They are being held without bail. 

Law enforcement agents unearthed Araujo's body from a shallow grave in the El Dorado County wilderness east of Placerville Wednesday. 

According to police, Araujo was reported missing by his mother, Sylvia Guerrero, on Oct. 5 when he failed to return from a late-night party held two days prior at the home of brothers Jose and Paul Richard Merel Jr. at 37147 St. Matthew Drive. 

Guerrero told police that her son was a “cross-dresser” and sometimes went by the names Gwen, Wendy and Lida. 

According to court records, Araujo wore a skirt to the Oct. 3 party but brought a pair of jeans with him “for the purpose of concealing his gender if he became too drunk.”