Concern Kern County Killers Are Taking Refuge In San Bernardino County’s Wide-Open Desert Outback

Those who live or travel in the northwestern portion of San Bernardino County might take note of unverified reports that either known or unknown suspects in multiple killings and attempted murders in Kern County have or may be taking refuge in the region’s more remote communities.
Just before midnight on April 30 at a motorhome/recreational vehicle parked in a lot beside H Street proximate to both Cerro Gordo Road and Belshaw Street in Mojave four people were killed.
The victims were Darius Travon Canada, 31, of Mojave; Anna Marie Hester, 34, of Mojave; Martina Barraza, 33, of Mojave and Faith Leighanne Rose Asbry, 20, of California City. All four were shot in the head. Canada, Hester and Barraza were pronounced dead at the scene. Asby was transported alive to Antelope Valley Hospital, but was pronounced dead in the early morning of May 1.
Canada and Hester were parents to two sons, aged 6 and 12. They met in Apple Valley about 15 years ago and were attempting to raise their children and a child Hester had from a previous relationship. The three minors were not present in the motorhome/recreational vehicle on April 30. Canada and Hester subsisted on income they obtained from doing odd jobs and low skill maintenance work in Mojave.Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood referred to the killings as “an isolated incident” that grew out of the consideration that the motorhome/recreational vehicle was a “drug house.” Youngblood said the “lifestyle of the residence,” meaning the drug culture in which those there were involved, contributed to the shooting.
Barraza was a mother of five.
The last of the four to be shot was Asbury, who had been human trafficked as a teenager. On April 30, Asbury was present in the motorhome/recreational vehicle along with the three other victims and two others when a person or person’s unknown burst into the vehicle, at least one of whom was armed with a gun. Asbury locked herself into the motorhome’s bathroom and texted a friend about what was happening. Two of those present when the gunman arrived left the motorhome.
Sketchy information indicates the gunman was seeking a stolen cell phone. The gunman, possibly with an accomplice, executed Canada, Hester and Barraza. Ultimately, Asbury, too, was shot.
The Kern County Sheriff’s Department gathered evidence at the scene, including fingerprints and blood. The department has not been too forthcoming with information about the murders. It is known that the department has determined the type of gun used in the shooting.
Mojave is located in Kern County, roughly 25 miles north of Lancaster in Los Angeles County and about 14 miles from California City in Kern County. Mojave is approximately 75 miles from Trona in San Bernardino County.
Suspects in the murders have not been identified or described.
On June 4, at 3:58 p.m., Kern County deputies were summoned to a residence in the 2400 block of Jo Ellen Court in Wasco. While the deputies were en route, a report came in that an individual believed to have been wounded in the shooting was at Kern County Fire Station 31 at 2424 7th Street in Wasco.
The shooting victim, it was determined, was a 34-year-old man. He was transported to the Wasco Medical Center at 2101 7th Street. He was placed into the intensive care ward in serious condition.
Kern County sheriff’s detectives identified Alberto Padilla Jr., 40, and his father, Alberto Padilla Sr., 62, as the shooting suspects. Arrest warrants were issued for both.
The Padillas are believed to have fled Kern County following the shooting, and were most likely headed for San Bernardino County. Both are considered armed and dangerous. They were driving a black GMC Yukon, with California license plate 7GCD787.
There is reason to believe that the Padillas, as well as the killer or killers of Canada, Hester, Barraza and Asbury are seeking to lay low in an out-of-the-way place such as Johannesburg and Randsburg in Kern County or Red Mountain and Trona in San Bernardino County.

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