UPDATE: Grandson charged with arson and murder sentenced
UPDATE: Sioux County Attorney Thomas G. Kunstle announced that Santos Rodriguez Jr., age 20, of Rock Valley, Iowa, pled guilty and was sentenced today for Murder in the Second Degree and Arson in the First Degree.
Rodriguez was sentenced to 50 years on the murder and 25 years on the arson counts, with the sentences running consecutively for a total indeterminate term not to exceed 75 years in prison.
Murder in the Second Degree, by law, requires Rodriguez actually serve 35 years behind bars before he is eligible for parole or work release.
UPDATE: The death of a 84 year old Rock Valley Man in a fire last month has lead to the arrest of his grandson.
An investigation was initiated by the Iowa State Fire Marshal’s Office and the Rock Valley Police Department in consultation with the Sioux County Attorney.
The Iowa DCI was also contacted and special agents were brought in to assist in the investigation.
The investigation revealed that Luis Luevenos, suffered multiple stab wounds to the body prior to the fire.
Investigators learned that Santos Rodriguez Jr., 19, a grandson of Luis Luevenos, who also resided in the same home had traveled to Utah after the fire.
DCI Agents traveled to Utah and conducted an interview with Rodriguez.
Authorities say Rodriguez made admissions to stabbing his grandfather and intentionally setting the fire afterwards.
Rodriguez was arrested November 8th in Utah on warrants stemming from charges issued by the Rock Valley Police Department.
He was charged with Murder in the First Degree, a class A felony, and Arson in the First Degree, a class B felony.
Rodriguez is currently in custody in Utah and awaiting extradition back to Iowa with bond set at $1,000,000.
The investigation is on-going and anyone having information related to the fire is encouraged to contact the Rock Valley Police Department.
On Sunday morning, just before 2:30 a.m., the Rock Valley Fire Department responded to a report of a house fire that occurred at 1416 15th Street in Rock Valley, IA.
On arrival, responders discovered a portion of the house was fully engulfed by fire and were told there was someone still inside.
Firefighters gained entry to the residence, extinguished the fire and discovered a deceased man inside.
Luis Leuvanos, age 84, of Rock Valley was identified as the deceased man.
The Rock Valley Fire Department was assisted by the Hull Fire Department, Rock Valley Ambulance, Rock Valley Police Department and the Sioux County Sheriff's Office.
The cause of the fire remains under investigation by the Rock Valley Fire Chief and the Iowa State Fire Marshal.