Friends, family mourn 19-year-old Livermore homicide victim

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ByKatie Marzullo KGO logo
Wednesday, February 14, 2018
Friends, family mourn 19-year-old Livermore homicide victim
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Neighbors in Modesto described the tense moments as two murder suspects were arrested in connection with the murder of a 19-year-old woman who died after being found stabbed multiple times in Livermore Monday.

MODESTO, Calif. (KGO) -- Family and friends held a vigil in San Jose Tuesday night For Lizette Cuesta. Officials say the 19-year-old woman was murdered and that she named her suspected killers with her last breath.

RELATED: Neighbors describe moments as Livermore murder suspects arrested

In the darkness, flickers of light. Candles illuminated pictures of 19-year-old Lizette Cuesta, as her family and friends shared their grief-- and memories.

"A really genuine person. That's something I'll always remember about her," said Alexandra Spohn who used to skateboard with Cuesta.

"Very bubbly, just a very bubbly person. It's kind of like that energy where it's contagious," said friend Yvette Terriquez.

The vigil was held at Great Oaks Park in San Jose, where Cuesta used to hang out with friends.

She graduated from Silver Creek High School in 2016 but was currently living in Tracy.

"We'll obviously be looking for a motive in this case," said Sgt. Ray Kelly of the Alameda County Sheriff's Office.

Cuesta was found bleeding, crawling along Tesla Road in Livermore Monday morning.

Authorities said she had been beaten and stabbed-- mortally wounded.

RELATED: Two arrested after woman found stabbed in Livermore dies

But, before she died, she named two suspects.

"Lizette's compelling statement to the first responders allowed us to get to Modesto in a timely manner," said Sgt. Kelly.

Alameda County Sheriff's investigators arrested Daniel Gross and Melissa Leonardo in Modesto.

Neighbors, including a young boy and his grandmother, witnessed the arrests.

"We were just scared because we saw a lot of guns and we thought they were going to shoot or something," said 9-year-old Jaden Silva.

His grandmother Bertha Andrade, added. "They said get out with your hands up we know you are there."

Gross and Leonardo were friends with Cuesta. They're scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday afternoon.