In April 2021, associates of a drug trafficking organization (DTO) conspired to abduct Rossana Delgado, 37, of Bethlehem. Investigators say the group lured Delgado to the Plaza Fiesta Shopping Mall in DeKalb County under the pretense of a shopping trip on April 16, 2021.
According to the Georgia Bureau of Investigations (GBI), members of this DTO associated together for the common purposes of illegally committing acts of violence and obtaining money and property through the sale of drugs and illegal controlled substances. Investigators believe the DTO distributed controlled substances, such as methamphetamine, throughout Georgia.
Delgado was taken to a residence in DeKalb where she was bound and transported to subsequent locations in Clayton and Gilmer counties over a several-day period, ultimately arriving at a cabin in Gilmer County.
The residence in Gilmer County was a rental cabin that was reserved through an online vacation rental company using a stolen identity.
At the cabin in Gilmer County, authorities say associates of the DTO tortured Delgado before her death and eventually carried out her murder, dismemberment and burning of her body. They subsequently concealed and destroyed evidence of her murder.
Additionally, associates of the DTO secured transportation and facilitated their fleeing to Mexico to prevent apprehension.
Gilmer County deputies found Delgado’s remains on the morning of April 20, 2021, while conducting a welfare check at a residence in Cherry Log.
In May 2021, Oscar Manuel Garcia of Austell, Megan Alyssa Colone of Stone Mountain and Juan Antonio Vega of Cobb County were apprehended in Reynosa, Mexico, and extradited to the United States.
In June 2021, Juan Ayala-Rodriguez of Gainesville was apprehended in Durango, Mexico, and extradited to the United States.
Other defendants, including Eva Galicia Martinez of Winder, who was arrested by the Barrow County Sheriff’s Office on May 7, 2021, were apprehended at various times during the investigation and pendency of this case.
In February 2022, the Gilmer County grand jury returned an indictment against 14 named defendants on charges related to this case.This matter was set for trial by jury in the Superior Court of Gilmer County to begin on May 1, 2023, but nine of the suspects entered guilty pleas before the trial.
The following are the suspects who entered guilty pleas and their respective charges and sentences:• Oscar Manuel Garcia - malice murder, kidnapping, concealing the death of another, removal of body parts from the scene of death, aggravated battery and violation of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO). Garcia was sentenced to life in prison.
• Juan Ayala-Rodriguez - kidnapping, concealing the death of another, aggravated battery and violation of the RICO Act. Ayala-Rodriguez was sentenced to life in prison.
• Juan Antonio Vega - kidnapping, concealing the death of another, aggravated battery and violation of the RICO Act. Vega was sentenced to 70 years with 30 of those years in the Georgia state prison system.
• Megan Alyssa Colone - violation of the RICO Act. Colone was sentenced to 20 years with 18 of those years in the Georgia state prison system.
• Eva Galicia Martinez - violation of the RICO Act. Martinez was sentenced to 20 years, with 13 of those years being in prison.
• Terri Amanda Garner, Patrick Harvard, Calvin Harvard and Shane Callaway - violation of the RICO Act. All four suspects were sentenced to serve time in the Georgia state prison system to be followed by probation.
SUSPECTS AT LARGE
The case remains open within the District Attorney’s Office in Gilmer County as the following defendants remain at large and face the following charges:
• Mario Alberto Barbosa-Juarez of Oklahoma City, Okla. - malice murder, felony murder, kidnapping, concealing the death of another, removal of body parts from the scene of death, aggravated battery and violation of the RICO Act (two counts).
• Carolina Jazmin Rodriguez Ramirez of Oklahoma - felony murder, kidnapping and violation of the RICO Act (two counts).
• Maria Katherine Encarnacion of Marietta - felony murder, kidnapping and violation of the RICO Act (two counts).
The investigation of this case was conducted by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) with the assistance of numerous local, state and federal law enforcement agencies including the Gilmer County Sheriff’s Office, Homeland Security Investigations and the United States Marshals.
Appalachian District Attorney B. Alison Sosebee said, “I would like to thank all of the law enforcement agencies that were involved in the investigation of this case. This matter not only spanned across numerous local and state jurisdictions, but also involved the assistance of the federal government in extraditing defendants from Mexico. The GBI has been exhaustive in its investigation as well as the apprehension of these individuals. Our local and state law enforcement agencies have been invaluable, and I would especially like to thank the Gilmer County Sheriff’s Office for their extensive involvement in this matter, as well as the Fannin County Sheriff’s Office and the Pickens County Sheriff’s Office for their assistance.”
She continued, “I also want to extend recognition to the staff of the District Attorney’s Office for their months of preparation, long hours and perseverance in preparing this matter for trial to ensure that justice is served. It is my hope, even though this matter remains open, that the resolutions and sentences entered at this time will assist the family and loved ones of Rossana Delgado in beginning to obtain closure.”
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