Fresno murder suspect used Fourth of July as cover, police say

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A fatal fight over family is the focus of a Fresno murder trial. Police reveal the trail they followed to arrest an accused Fourth of July shooter. (KFSN)

A fatal fight over family is the focus of a Fresno murder trial. Police reveal the trail they followed to arrest an accused Fourth of July shooter.

"She says that Mr. Sams has a temper and that he was furious at Mr. Fisher," said Fresno police detective Antonio Rivera of his conversation with one of the witnesses.

Vance Sams is now facing a murder trial for the death of Raymond Fisher, which police believe was committed out of jealousy.

An explosive sound brought Cardell Young out of his Southwest Fresno home. The first face he saw belonged to Vance Sams, his daughter's boyfriend.

"He asked him 'What was that?'" River said. "To which Mr. Sams replied 'It was a firework.'"

It was the Fourth of July, so the claim made sense, but Young also quickly noticed his daughter's ex on the ground. Raymond Fisher had stayed the night of July third with Young. He didn't survive the fourth. And Young told Action News back then that Sams didn't seem to care.

"I asked him 'Vance, what did you do? What did you do?'" Young told us. "And he looked down and he saw Raymond and he just walked casually down the street like it was nothing."

Fisher had only come back to Fresno a few months earlier. Young told police Sams was jealous of his contact with his daughter, Sherry Young. On the morning of his death, Fisher was waiting for Sherry to drop off their three kids so he could take them to a family party for the holiday. But before he saw them, their mother's boyfriend arrived. Before Sams left the scene, another witness saw smoke coming from his clothes and described it to police.

"He described to me a bulge in his back right pants pocket which he believed to be caused by a firearm that was put in the back pocket," River said in court Thursday.

Another witness told police she got a text from Sams saying he was going to kill Fisher. Investigators could never find any such text. But what they had was enough. Police arrested Sams two days later and now, 14 months after that, a judge ruled Thursday there is enough evidence for him to stand trial for murder.



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crimetrackershootingjuly 4thmurderFresno
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