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Man Arrested in Howard Beach Double Murder

By Julie Shapiro | March 12, 2013 8:36pm

QUEENS — Police have arrested a man in the killing of two Brooklyn ex-cons whose charred remains were found in a Howard Beach marsh last week, officials said.

Rogelio Rodriguez, 34, a Bushwick resident, was charged with murder Tuesday in connection with the deaths of Rudy Superville, 22, and Gary Lopez, 25, whose shot and beaten bodies were discovered in Spring Creek Park about 4:30 a.m. March 6 after firefighters extinguished a massive blaze that had engulfed the area, police said.

Rodriguez is accused of beating Superville and Lopez and hitting them with a pistol on the morning of March 5 after they had already been shot by someone else inside of Rodriguez's home on Grove Street in Brooklyn, the Queens District Attorney's office said.

Rodriguez is also accused of dumping seven guns into Newtown Creek early in the morning of March 7, including two guns that were allegedly used to kill Superville and Lopez, the DA's office said.

In addition to murder, Rodriguez was charged with manslaughter, criminal possession of a weapon and tampering with evidence, prosecutors said. He faces up to 25 years to life in prison if convicted. 

"The defendant is accused of participating in the brutal murder of two men whose bodies were dumped and intentionally set on fire in an attempt to cover up the alleged crime," Queens DA Richard Brown said in a statement. "This case will be pursued to ensure that justice is served."

Investigators are still looking for three additional suspects in the case, the DA's office said.

Sources said last week that Superville and Lopez may have been involved in a drug turf war when they were killed.

Lopez, who previously spent three years in prison for robbery, was carrying $10,000 in cash the day he was killed because he planned to buy a new car, relatives said. He was the father of a 6-year-old girl, his family said.

Superville, Lopez's childhood friend, previously spent five years in prison for robbery and assault, according to state records.

Rodriguez was scheduled to be arraigned in Queens Criminal Court on Wednesday.