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3 Suspects Arrested on Murder Charges in Homeless Man’s Death

Carlos Medina
Carlos Medina

Three Santa Barbara County men have been arrested on murder charges in a case where deputies discovered in a field the body of a homeless man who was so seriously injured that his family was forced to take him off life support.

Carlos Medina, 44, Jonathan Andrade, 20, and Roman Romero, 18, all of Santa Barbara County, are in custody on murder charges and were arrested on Sunday, according to Kelly Hoover, a spokeswoman for the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Department.

The incident occurred Sept. 16, when sheriff's deputies were dispatched at 6 a.m. to an area known as Granny's Field, an open field located west of San Simeon Drive and San Angelo Avenue in unincorporated Santa Barbara County.

When they arrived, they located an unconscious assault victim, later identified as Richard Alden Boden, 51, whom Hoover said was a transient who frequented the location.

Boden sustained major injuries from the assault even after undergoing several weeks of treatment, and never regained consciousness.

"Boden was taken off life support at the request of next of kin on Oct. 14, and he died a short time later," Hoover said. "An autopsy revealed that Boden died as a result of complications stemming from the injuries he sustained during the assault."

Jonathan Andrade
Jonathan Andrade

There were no suspects at the time of the assault, but detectives conducted an extensive investigation in the following weeks, ultimately locating Medina, Andrade and Romero.

Hoover said all three suspects are residents of Santa Barbara County and are believed to have spent a significant amount of time in Granny’s Field.

Medina was taken into custody at 7:45 a.m. Sunday in Pasadena at a court-ordered residential treatment living facility.

He had been arrested in the same area for a separate assault with a deadly weapon case on Aug. 7, 2012, Hoover said.

Roman Romero
Roman Romero

About an hour later, Romero was taken into custody without incident at his Santa Barbara residence, and just after 11 a.m.

Andrade was taken into custody at his residence in the unincorporated area of Santa Barbara County without incident, Hoover said.

All three were booked into the Santa Barbara County Jail on charges of murder and conspiracy, according to Hoover, and bail was set at $1 million each.

Noozhawk staff writer Lara Cooper can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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