KERN COUNTY, Calif. — Kern County is ending a month that left at least 8 people dead in violent incidents, with Oildale’s community in particular suffering several days of heartbreak. There were at least 3 confirmed homicides there in just the last two weeks — two of them, a day apart — but the Kern County Sheriff’s Office is still investigating four suspicious deaths that all happened the same day. The Sheriff’s Office said the cases are unrelated.
The 8 homicides are fewer than the 11 killings in January, and higher than the 6 in February. But there are at least 5 investigations pending, and March could become the deadliest month while the year is still young.
The first homicide of March was the slaying of 34-year-old Elizabeth Keaveny, a mother of two found dead in a bloody scene on Candy Street, in Southwest Bakersfield. On March 5, the suspect, 30-year-old Kevin Antrim, had been seen running outside covered in blood and paint, and had barricaded himself inside a home when police arrived. Bakersfield Police Officers managed to get in, and found Keaveny’s body. Antrim pleaded not guilty and is due back in court in April.
The body of 16-year-old Marya Neufeld was found the next morning near an orchard on Tower Line Road and Buena Vista Boulevard in Arvin. She had been shot in the head. No suspects have been announced and the Sheriff’s Office believes Neufeld was in East Bakersfield and Arvin the day before she died. Anyone with information is asked to call KCSO at (661) 861-3110.
On March 9, 37-year-old Stanley Wade Peterson was shot on East Ninth Street, near Martin Luther King Jr Boulevard. 41-year-old Jerry Dawson was arrested, but later released pending further investigation.
On March 11, Bakersfield saw another deadly shooting at the Tacos La Villa on Union Avenue. According to court documents, the restaurant’s surveillance video showed 32-year-old Juan Manuel Andrade Fernandez Jr. apparently bothering customers outside while possibly intoxicated or under the influence of a drug. At one point he gets into an altercation with people inside one vehicle, who attacked him and moved his car up the street. However, he returns after retrieving the vehicle, only to be shot moments later by two people who approached him on foot. Police arrested 19-year-old Manuel Madrid shortly after the shooting, and he’s now charged with first-degree murder.
22-year-old Lonnie Hollinquest, a young father who welcomed his first baby in January, was killed on March 12 after being shot at a home on Padre Street, near Cottonwood Road. His uncle, who a family member said was like a step-father for Hollinquest, was arrested two weeks later. 50-year-old Detrick Hollinquest will be due in court on April 1 on a murder charge.
On March 14, 40-year-old Jeremy Muzzy was stabbed to death by his partner, 43-year-old Reanna Rebish at her father’s home on Harris Drive in Oildale. Rebish was arrested, but later released after no charges were filed against her and the case was sent back to KCSO for further investigation.
March 19 was a bloody Friday in Oildale, when the Kern County’s Sheriff’s Office responded to two separate incidents that left four people dead. On El Tejon Avenue, the bodies of mother and son Beverley and Jonathan Rosson were found inside a home. About a mile away a man and woman were later found dead at a home on Castaic Avenue. As of this report none of the deaths have officially been ruled homicides.
Later that evening in Bakersfield, the body of 40-year-old Karla Villegas was found on the 4800 block of East Brundage Lane. While BPD said her body had obvious signs of trauma, the coroner has not yet said she was the victim of a homicide and an examination is still pending to determine what happened to her.
A week later on March 27, a trip to an Oildale Fastrip store turned deadly for 22-year-old Jeffrey Correll. According to Correll’s brother, he and friends were driving to the store when another car passed them, wth the occupants flipping them off and taunting them. The cars pulled into the Fastrip parking lot on Airport Drive, and Correll exchanged heated words with a passenger, who shot him multiple times. The Sheriff’s Office has not announced any suspects in the case.
The next night, the Sheriff’s Office was once again called to a home in Oildale after 40-year-old Michael Glenn Lewis was shot. Lewis was rushed to Kern Medical but was pronounced dead. No suspects have been announced in this case.
Until the outcomes of the March 19 investigations are known, KGET-17 has counted at least 25 homicides this year, which nearly matches the 24 homicides seen in 2020 by this time.