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Police Name Murder Victim

Groveland, CA –Stockton Police have released the name of the murder victim whose body was found burning in a campfire in Groveland.


Detectives report the victim was 48-year-old Michael Shane Jones who lived in the same Stockton home as the two murder suspects. 38-year-old Bryan Cook and 49-year-old Valentina Taz have been arrested for killing Jones.


On Thursday, police were called to the home on the 4500 block of Mist Trail Drive for a report of a possible homicide. When officers arrived on the scene, they found the house empty with a bloody crime scene inside and no body.


Tips led detectives to a property in Groveland. Stockton investigators asked Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Deputies to assist them in checking out the location. That is when they discovered Cook at a campfire with Jones’ burning torso in the flames. During a search of the campsite, detectives discovered other dismembered parts of the body in Cook’s vehicle. He was arrested for suspicion of homicide without incident.


Deputies located Taz in Tuolumne County late Friday night. After Stockton Police questioned her, she was arrested on suspicion of homicide and conspiracy to commit a homicide. Investigators will not comment on how Jones died or if a murder weapon was found at the home or campsite.


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