Updated: Body found near pot plants identified

 

Police identified the man found dead in rural southwest Morgan
Hill as Carlos Alberto Valencia, 24, of San Jose.
Police identified the man found dead in rural southwest Morgan Hill as Carlos Alberto Valencia, 24, of San Jose.

Valencia was shot by an unknown suspect while tending goats on property near Sheila Avenue and Prom Drive, according to Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Sgt. Rick Sung.

The investigation into the homicide is ongoing, Sung said.

Valencia’s body was found about 1:40 a.m. Friday by an unidentified person who called police to report the suspicious incident. Deputies have not said what the relationship between the victim and the caller might be, or why the caller was in the area.

The body was found several hundred yards off a private road, on the side of a steep hill in a remote, overgrown area. Few residents live in the area where the body was found.

Located next to Valencia’s body was a marijuana garden, deputies said. Sung declined to say if there is a connection between the pot plants and Valencia’s death.

A law enforcement source close to the investigation said Valencia was shot in the leg, and the homicide is directly related to the marijuana garden.

Up the hill from where the body was found and at the end of the private road is a single residence. A neighbor in the area, who declined to be named, said she saw a tow truck hauling a gold-colored sport-utility vehicle down the hill, coming from the direction of the home.

A locked gate blocks public traffic to the home. The neighbor said the vehicle was hauled away Friday afternoon, when investigators and patrol vehicles from the Sheriff’s Office were scouring the area.

Anyone with information about the incident may contact Detective Sgt. McAllister at (408) 808-4500 or (408) 808-4401 after business hours.

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