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Suspect arrested in Taylorsville double homicide; may have started as drug deal

Posted at 9:42 AM, Feb 01, 2023

TAYLORSVILLE, Utah — Attorneys for the suspect in a Taylorsville double homicide said their client shot a man from the backseat of a vehicle after the passenger shot his cousin, who was the driver in the vehicle.

Rafael Antonio Torres, 19, surrendered to police Tuesday evening and was taken into custody on one count of aggravated murder and obstruction of justice.

The arrest comes after two men were found shot to death in a vehicle near a Taylorsville apartment complex late Monday night.

The driver, identified as 21-year-old Eduardo Moreno-Lujan, was found dead with a gunshot wound to his head. The passenger, an unidentified male, also died from a gunshot wound to the chest.

It's not believed the two men lived in the area and police believe the shooting may have originated as a drug deal between the men.

During their investigation, one of Lujan's family members said Torres is a cousin and went to a drug transaction with Lujan where the buyer sat in the passenger seat of the vehicle.

Attorneys for Torres later contacted police and gave a written statement with Torres' account of what happened.

Court documents with the statement from attorneys affirms Torres is Lujan's cousin and accompanied him to a drug transaction where the buyer sat in the front seat of the vehicle.

During the transaction, arrest documents state that the buyer said he needed to get more money and "pretended to open the door of the car, but pulled out a gun and shot [Lujan]."

Torres then shot the passenger from the backseat and "gunfire was exchanged as Torres exited the vehicle and 'fired the last shot' as he fled the scene," court documents state.

He ran from the area, discarding his handgun in the process because he thought the buyer may have had other friends in the area.