Teen charged as adult in beating death of woman

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Teen arrested in woman's beating death

The following update is a press release from the Maricopa County Attorney's Office:

County Attorney Andrew Thomas announced today that Jose Preciliano Quintero (DOB 8/16/92) is accused of First Degree Murder, Kidnapping, and Sexual Assault in a criminal complaint filed on December 17, 2008.

According to the probable cause statement filed by Phoenix police, the naked body of a woman who had been beaten to death was found December 13, 2008 in a vacant lot near 22nd street and Broadway.

The probable cause statement goes on to say that someone called police claiming that Quintero had been bragging about the killing.

On December 16, 2008 Quintero was arrested. Police say the defendant admitted being angry because a girlfriend had just broken up with him.

The probable cause statement goes on to say the defendant then spotted the victim, whom he had never met, and dragged her to an empty lot where he allegedly kicked her and punched her and sexually assaulting her with a stick.

Quintero is being tried as an a adult because of the state statute that mandates that certain violent crimes be tried in adult court if the juvenile is 15 or older Thomas stated, "Given the nature of this crime as alleged by police it is fitting that this defendant be tried as an adult. We thank the Phoenix Police Department for their quick work in locating a suspect."


PHOENIX - Police say the person responsible for the death of a woman found murdered in a field is a teenaged boy.

People in the South Phoenix neighborhood where the victim was found over the weekend are stunned at not only the nature of the crime, but also at the young age of the suspect who is 16 years old and faces a long list of charges.

In the middle of an empty field in South Phoenix is where the body of a 39-year-old woman was dumped on Saturday. Police say the victim, identified as Helen Coulter, had been sexually assaulted and viciously beaten to death.

Robert Fountain, who lives near where the body was found, tells 3TV, "She was nakedtotally naked." Fountain lives in the apartment complex next to the field. He was speechless to learn that the alleged killer is only 16 years old.

Phoenix Police Det. Cindy Scott says, "This suspect had a fit of rage and killed this victim. It was a random act. The victimshe visits friends in the area. She was walking down the street in the neighborhood, a confrontation evolved between she and the suspect and a brutal attack took place."

According to detectives, early Saturday morning 16-year-old Jose Quintero, a former student at South Mountain High School, allegedly kidnapped raped and beat the victim with his own hands. He then allegedly took her body to the field and left her there to die.

Ollie Reynolds, a neighbor of the suspect, tells 3TV, "Now that's scary."

3TV also learned that in the last 24 hours Phoenix Police detectives have questioned two current students at South Mountain High School in relation to this case.

A student who was present when police showed up at the school tells 3TV, "They grabbed them and they pretty much put them in handcuffs and then they grabbed his bag and they were searching it."< /p>

According to school administrators, those students were questioned and released.

As for the suspect, nobody at his home wanted to talk to 3TV. The 16-year-old was arrested at school Tuesday afternoon. He is now looking at first-degree murder, kidnapping and sexual assault charges. Phoenix Police are pushing for Quintero to be tried as an adult.

"Sixteena baby," reacts Reynolds. "He's somebody's baby and she was somebody's mother. So it's sad all the way around."

It will be up to the Maricopa County attorney to determine if this 16-year-old will be tried as an adult.