DENVER (KDVR) — The teen arrested in connection to the death of a 14-year-old boy near the Southwest Recreation Center will be charged as an adult.

On Friday, a 17-year-old suspect was taken into custody for his connection to the death of Josiaz “JoJo” Aragon.

Initially, his identity was not released because he was a minor. Now, the Denver district attorney’s office is charging the 17-year-old as an adult. Multiple criminal charges were filed against Diego E. Lopez.

Death of Josiaz “JoJo” Aragon

Back on Aug. 8, just before 1:20 p.m., Denver police officers were called to the Southwest Recreation Center at 9200 W. Saratoga Pl in the Marston neighborhood conducting an outdoor death investigation.

Once officers arrived on scene, they found Aragon dead with what they described as apparent signs of trauma.

After the Denver Medical Examiner’s office completed the autopsy, it was revealed that Aragon had died from “multiple sharp and blunt force injuries with a gunshot wound.”

“Of the 101 homicides Your Affiant has been either the primary or secondary investigator on, this victim suffered injuries indicative of the most violent assault Your Affiant has seen. Further, Your Affiant doesn’t recall being involved in a case where one victim was assaulted in so many different ways; stabbed, beaten-probably ‘pistol whipped,’ shot and possibly stomped on,” said Detective Daniel Andrews in the arrest affidavit.

Lopez had attended school with Aragon in 2021, and over the summer the pair had been discussing the sale of a firearm, according to the Denver Police Department.

Investigators revealed that the two were in the middle of the firearm transaction on Aug. 8 when Lopez allegedly assaulted, robbed and killed Aragon.

“My client’s already being prejudiced before we have an opportunity to confront one scintilla of evidence,” Jason Flores-Williams, said.

Flores-Williams is representing Lopez.

According to the arrest warrant, the detective said of the 101 homicides they’ve investigated, “this victim suffered injuries indicative of the most violent assault [they’ve] seen”.

Those, now public details, frustrated Flores-Williams.

“We have not had one meaningful day in court, and he is already being painted in a false light by police, media, and now district attorney’s media,” Flores-Williams said.

Lopez is being charged as an adult with the following:

  • One count of first-degree murder
  • One count of aggravated robbery with a real or simulated weapon
  • One count of tampering with physical evidence
  • One count of possessing a firearm as a juvenile
  • Sentence enhancing charge of using a weapon to commit a violent crime.