Sister of murdered Utah radio show host ‘can finally sleep’ after suspect’s jailing

May 27, 2023, 5:01 PM | Updated: 5:18 pm

SALT LAKE CITY COUNTY, Utah — The sister of a Utah-based Spanish radio show host is sharing her relief that the justice system is moving forward after her sister was murdered more than a year and a half ago.

Video from the Taylorsville Police Department shows officers walking 36-year-old Manuel Omar Burciaga-Perea out of the police station and into a patrol vehicle Friday night, headed for jail.

“Oh my gosh, I have a lot of emotion. I have a lot of feelings,” said Rocio Sifuentes.

Her sister, Gabriela Sifuentes Castilla, was shot and killed in October 2021, and police believe Burciaga-Perea was responsible. Castilla went by the name Gaby Ramos and was a local Spanish radio show host known by many in the community.

“She was an educated woman, super happy. She liked to help other people,” Sifuentes said. “So, I miss her so much.”

Sifuentes said Gaby and Manuel met at the restaurant Gaby worked and were in a dating relationship. Two months before the shooting, Sifuentes said her sister cut things off with Burciaga-Perea.

She explained that she didn’t know the extent of the domestic violence that Gaby endured, but she described Burciaga-Perea as jealous, aggressive, and physically violent.

On Oct. 17, 2021, Ramos returned to the home she shared with Sifuentes and her family. Sifuentes previously told KSL TV that Burciaga-Perea had been waiting for Ramos to return.

“He went to my house, knocked on the door, and shot her,” she said.

Sifuentes described how her sister died in her arms.

Family speaks out after Taylorsville woman gunned down in her home

Taylorsville police Chief Brady Cottam said Saturday that Burciaga-Perea left the country afterward to his hometown in Chihuahua, Mexico.

“We are dealing with the suspect who fled to Mexico right away, and that process takes quite a bit of time,” he said during a press conference.

He explained how it took a lot of time, paperwork, and coordination with agencies, including the Salt Lake County District Attorney’s Office, U.S. Marshals, the Department of Justice in Washington, D.C., and authorities in Mexico.

“Our detectives and investigators have put forth hours and hours– hundreds of hours– literally securing the arrest warrant and working with the Salt Lake County District Attorney’s Office,” Cottam said.

Burciaga-Perea was arrested last November on that warrant and has been sitting in a federal prison in Mexico City while awaiting extradition. On Friday, he landed at Salt Lake International Airport.

“The U.S. Marshals picked him up from federal prison in Mexico City and put him on a plane, and brought him to the Salt Lake International Airport, where our detectives took custody of him,” Cottam explained.

Man extradited from Mexico to Utah to face charges for murder of Gaby Ramos

After police said he refused to interview with detectives at the Taylorsville Police Department, video shows him being escorted to the Salt Lake County Jail.

That was a huge moment for Sifuentes.

“It’s taken so long, but finally, he’s here,” she said.

Sifuentes said she has a message that women need to talk and speak out and leave the people who have hurt them.

“To the Latin community, please don’t be quiet,” she said. “If they have a case or, the justice is not taking care of the cases, please speak up. They are going to get justice.”

She said Gaby’s 10-year-old daughter told Sifuentes she feels she can finally sleep at night.

“This is not just justice for my sister, justice for my niece–[it’s] justice for the whole woman that suffer domestic violence,” she said. “So, it’s a good fight. It’s worth it.”

Burciaga-Perea faces charges of aggravated murder, aggravated burglary, aggravated assault, and domestic violence in the presence of a child.

If you or someone you know is going through abuse, help is available.

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Sister of murdered Utah radio show host ‘can finally sleep’ after suspect’s jailing