Second-degree murder trial set for May

Renton man pleads not guilty to beating death

PORT ANGELES — A Renton man charged with the beating death of a woman whose body was found in the wilderness south of Blyn on Valentine’s Day will be tried May 4 after pleading not guilty to second-degree murder.

Alejandro Jesse Aguilera-Rojas, 23, entered his plea in Clallam County Superior Court on Friday.

He is charged with second-degree murder with a deadly weapon enhancement for allegedly beating Dioneth Lopez to death with a tequila bottle Feb. 11.

Lopez, of San Pablo, Calif., was 21.

Clallam County Superior Court Judge Brent Basden scheduled a three-week trial. A pre-trial status conference was sent for March 27.

Rojas remained Saturday in the Clallam County jail on $1 million bail.

The Clallam County Sheriff’s Office alleged that Rojas left Lopez for dead along a U.S. Forest Service Road in a wooded area south of Blyn on the morning of Feb. 11.

“The deceased was left essentially in the forest like a piece of trash,” said Michele Devlin, Clallam County chief criminal deputy prosecuting attorney, during Rojas’s bail hearing Feb. 20.

Lopez had threatened to expose her three-year romantic relationship with Rojas, a married man, according to the affidavit for probable cause.

Second-degree murder is a Class A felony in which a person causes the death of another without premeditation.

Lopez and Rojas has stayed at the Longhouse Market for about seven hours on the evening of Feb. 10, spending much of the time in Rojas’ red Chevy Silverado pickup truck, according to the store’s surveillance footage.

Location data from Rojas’ cellphone put him in the area of the murder scene on the morning of Feb. 11, investigators said.

Investigators said that Rojas had picked up Lopez at the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport after her flight from California on the morning of Feb. 10 and drove Lopez to Blyn.

The Clallam County Sheriff’s Office said Rojas was arrested near his residence in King County and transported by deputies to Port Angeles.

Rojas had been under surveillance of sheriff’s detectives and the FBI. The FBI was involved because the body was found on federal land in Olympic National Forest.


Reporter Rob Ollikainen can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 56450, or at [email protected].

More in Crime

Two charged in federal court for suicide hoax

False distress signal to Coast Guard a felony

Murder trial for Alejandro Rojas reset

Renton man accused of beating a woman to death near Blyn

Man placed on $100k bail after attacking nurse and officers

Officers initially called to hospital for aggression

Accused poacher sentenced to prison

Hutt first in state to serve time

Forks man charged with killing his infant daughter

A Forks man was charged Tuesday with the murder… Continue reading

Forks baby dies after alleged assault

Charges may be upgraded to murder

Infant clinging to life after alleged assault by her father

A six-week-old baby was fighting for her life Friday… Continue reading

Judge rules audio recording can be heard in trial of Forks man

Richard Aaron Dickinson charged with rape, kidnapping

Port Townsend man charged with child molestation

Alleged incident occurred nearly a decade ago

Port Angeles man sentenced to four years in prison for vehicle assault

Zachary Alan Fletcher maintains he was not the driver

Sequim man charged with third-degree assault of an officer

A Sequim man has been charged with an altercation… Continue reading