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Police searching for suspect in possible Taylorsville homicide

Photo of 34-year-old Manuel Omar Burciaga-Perea. (Credit: Taylorsville Police Department)

TAYLORSVILLE, Utah — Taylorsville police have asked for the public’s help in locating a 34-year-old man who they say is a suspect in a possible homicide.

Neighbors heard gunfire in the area of 2300 West and 5200 South around 1 a.m. Sunday.

They said their neighbor’s ex-boyfriend showed up around an hour before the shooting and broke a window, but stormed off when his ex-girlfriend wouldn’t let him inside. 

“She called (police) and said, ‘I’m scared for my life.’ They had asked if he had left. She said yes but that she was scared, and they didn’t send anybody out here,” said neighbor Kelli Gonzalez. 

Witnesses said 34-year-old Manuel Omar Burciaga-Perea came back a second time and that’s when the suspect opened fire.

When police responded around 1:30 a.m., they found an adult woman with multiple gunshot wounds.

She was pronounced dead on scene by officials with the Unified Fire Department.

Neighbors said they believe the story would have a different ending if police had shown up to the initial call. 

“If they would have taken the window breaking seriously, and if they would have just taken a little more time, I don’t think she would be gone. I don’t think he would have come back the second time. I just don’t feel like she would be gone,” said neighbor Jaymee Gonzalez. 

Police said it was about 15 minutes between calls, and the domestic violence situation would have been followed up on. 

“It wasn’t that we disregarded that, it’s just that we hadn’t gotten there because of other priority calls at the time,” said Cottam. “We always want to be there on scene before anything like this escalates.”

Police said Burciaga-Perea may be attempting to leave the state, possibly heading for the Mexican border, as they don’t believe he has family or friends in the area to harbor him.

He was last seen:

  • Wearing a black hooded sweater, blue jeans and brown shoes with white soles
  • Driving his 2000 Chevy full size extended cab with Utah license plate U405MN

Photo of Burciaga-Perea’s truck. (Credit: Taylorsville Police Department)

“We do believe him to be armed and dangerous based on the violence on the scene,” said Chief Brady Cottam with the Taylorsville Police Department.

Anyone who sees him or his vehicle has been asked to not approach the suspect directly, but rather, call Taylorsville Police at 801-840-4000.

The victim’s identity has not been released.

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