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Newsom Offers $50K Rewards in Fresno, Bakersfield Cold Cases



Gov. Newsom is offering $50,000 rewards for help solving the murders of Fresno's Kyrin Wright, left, and Bakersfield's Jessica Martinez. (GV Wire Composite/Paul Marshall)
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Gov. Gavin Newsom is offering $50,000 rewards for information that will help detectives in Fresno and Bakersfield solve two cold case homicides.

Newsom’s office announced the rewards in a news release on Wednesday.

In Fresno, Kyrin Wright, 19 was fatally shot outside of his apartment complex in May of last year.

Investigators say Wright was shot several times by a man in black clothing. Officers found Wright dead on the playground at the Parc Grove Commons near Clinton Avenue and Fresno Street.

Anyone with information about this murder is asked to contact Fresno police detective Chris Franks at (559) 621-2427 or detective Manny Romero at (559) 281-4140. In addition to the state’s $50,000 reward, Valley Crime Stoppers has a $3,000 reward for tips on this case.

Bakersfield Child Murdered 32 Years Ago

In Bakersfield, 4-year-old Jessica Martinez went missing while playing outside of her apartment complex and her body was found in a field 10 miles away 11 days later.

Anyone with information on the 1990 killing of Martinez is asked to contact Bakersfield police at (661) 327-7111. Kern Secret Witness is offering an additional $10,000 reward.

Rewards in Other California Cases

The governor’s office is also offering $50,000 rewards for help solving the murders of Lamar Murphy, 16, in Alameda County in 2017 and Eric Velasquez, 21, in Santa Paula in 1994.

Further information on all of these cold cases is available at this link.

Under California law, law enforcement agencies may ask the governor to issue rewards in certain unsolved cases where they have exhausted all investigative leads, to encourage individuals with information about the crimes to come forward.

More info on the Governor’s Reward Program can be found here.

Bill McEwen is news director and columnist for GV Wire. He joined GV Wire in August 2017 after 37 years at The Fresno Bee. With The Bee, he served as Opinion Editor, City Hall reporter, Metro columnist, sports columnist and sports editor through the years. His work has been frequently honored by the California Newspapers Publishers Association, including authoring first-place editorials in 2015 and 2016. Bill and his wife, Karen, are proud parents of two adult sons, and they have two grandsons. You can contact Bill at 559-492-4031 or at Send an Email

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