People protest against violence in Yakima after two woman are sh - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

People protest against violence in Yakima after two woman are shot and killed this weekend

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YAKIMA, WA - Laura Curiel is one of a few people who were picketing on the corner of S. 1st and E. Walnut Street, in front of the Moneytree earlier today. Her goal, she wants violence in the town of Yakima to stop. 

"I think that this should be a community event and anybody who wants to come out and show support not only for the victims, but also for Yakima in general," said Curiel "We really need some people to stand together and stop this violence." 

Her call to action comes after tragedy struck town this weekend. Two employees who worked at the Moneytree in the downtown area, Marta Martinez and Karina Morales-Rodrigues were shot to death by former employee Manuel Verduzco.

It all happened at 6:15 a.m. on Saturday, officials said that Verduzco arrived at the Moneytree at the same time that the women did. They suspect that one of the victims was shot and killed in her vehicle and the other was shot trying to run away form Verduzco, only to be killed in the street. Yakima Police Captain, Jeff Schneider says that they do not know what his motive was but have an idea of what it might have been.

"We suspect that the motive was a robbery but we do not know that," said Schneider. "For whatever reason I do not think it went as he had planned. He ended up shooting both of them and then fled." 

Verduzco was eventually caught later, on the same day by law enforcement, they said he was running errands when he was arrested. 

"We were able to execute a number of search warrants," said Schneider. "We were able to gather a lot of video that had been recorded in the entire downtown area able to point us towards the suspect." 

To show that they cared and that the victims were in their thoughts people left flowers, candles and balloons at the Moneytree, a pastor even stopped by to pray with Curiel and the others who were helping her cause. For Curiel the picketing is also about supporting her friend, who she has known since middle school, Martinez, one of the victims. 

"She was very quiet but once you got to know her she was very funny, she was very sweet, very loving, she was just a great person and a great woman." 

Verduzco made his first court appearance for a preliminary hearing today. In court the suspect was told that he may be facing two charges of first-degree murder and first-degree burglary. His bail is set at $1 million and an arraignment has been scheduled for April 11th.  

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