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August 19, 2022

Man killed in reported family disturbance

WATSONVILLE—A 55-year-old man was allegedly killed late Tuesday by his 38-year-old brother on the 100 block of Delaney Avenue in the outskirts of Watsonville. 

Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Ashley Keehn said detectives believe Seledonio Diaz, of Watsonville, killed his brother Francisco Diaz.

Detectives tracked Seledonio to the King’s Rest Motel in Gilroy. On Thursday around 1pm, after several hours barricaded in a room speaking with negotiators, Seledonio surrendered peacefully, and was taken into custody with the help of the Gilroy Police Department, Gilroy-Morgan Hill Regional SWAT Team and the Santa Clara Police Department.

He was booked into Santa Cruz County Jail on murder charges.

On Tuesday just after 9:40pm deputies received reports of a family disturbance at the residence. The initial arriving deputies found Francisco Diaz dead at the scene, Keehn said.

The method of the homicide has not been revealed.

Delaney Avenue is one block east of the Santa Cruz County Fairgrounds and stems off of East Lake Avenue.

On Wednesday morning Sheriff’s deputies, investigators and a forensic team were on Delaney Avenue picking through a large ranch-style, single-story home for clues. The home, surrounded with yellow crime scene tape, is situated on a sprawling lot with a sweeping horseshoe-shaped driveway, heaps of belongings strewn about and a large trampoline on the lawn. A large patch of the front garden had been torn up and was covered with plastic. Several neighbors in the otherwise quiet neighborhood stood nearby watching the investigation unravel.

Anyone with information regarding the case is asked to call Sgt. Detective Burnett at 831-454-7702.

Tarmo Hannula
Tarmo Hannula has been the lead photographer with The Pajaronian newspaper in Watsonville since 1997. He also reports on a wide range of topics, including police, fire, environment, schools, the arts and events. A fifth generation Californian, Tarmo was born in the Mother Lode of the Sierra (Columbia) and has lived in Santa Cruz County since the late 1970s. He earned a BA from UC Santa Cruz and has traveled to 33 countries.


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