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Police searching for person of interest in West Valley City homicide

Noel Munoz Lopez, 34, is a person of interest in a homicide that occurred Monday morning in West Valley City. (West Valley City Police Department)

WEST VALLEY CITY, Utah — Investigators said they’re looking for a 34-year-old man who is a person of interest in a homicide that occurred Monday morning in West Valley City.

Police identified the man as Noel Munoz Lopez.

The incident occurred around 7:10 a.m. in the area of 3800 South and 4200 West.

Roxanne Vainuku, public information officer for the West Valley City Police Department, said officers responded after receiving reports of two gunshots being fired and a man lying on the ground.

When officers arrived on scene, they found the victim unresponsive.

Lifesaving efforts were administered, but the victim, identified as 82-year-old Farrell Bartschi, was pronounced dead at the scene.

“Investigators have worked tirelessly to interview witnesses, gather evidence and process leads in this case,” read a press release from the WVCPD. “They have determined that Noel Munoz Lopez, who resides in Kearns, was in the area at the time of the shooting.”

The release went on to say that Lopez “has an association with the owners of the home in front of which the shooting occurred,” but that the victim “has no known association with the people who live inside the home, nor any association with Mr. Lopez,” but he lives in the area nearby.

Lopez was described as 5 feet 9 inches tall, weighing 210 pounds, bald, with a black beard and mustache.

Anyone with information has been asked to contact the West Valley City Police Department at 801-840-4000.

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