3 charged in killing of Maryland teens found dead night before graduation

Northwest High School in Germantown, Maryland

WTOP Radio

MONTGOMERY VILLAGE, Md. -- Police say three people have been charged with killing two Maryland teens who were found dead the night before their high school graduation, and said they believe the slayings were revenge for a robbery that one of the teens was rumored to have committed. 

Montgomery County Police Chief J. Thomas Manger said at a news conference late Saturday that the three are charged with murder and conspiracy to commit murder in the deaths of 17-year-old Shadi Adi Najjar nad 18-year-old Artem Ziberov.

The suspects were identified as 25-year-old Jose Canales-Yanez, 19-year-old Roger Garcia and 24-year-old Edgar Garcia-Gaona. 

Manger said investigators learned Najjar was rumored to have robbed Canales-Yanez's girlfriend last December, and was killed in retaliation. He said Ziberov may have been "in the wrong place at the wrong time."

Investigators say they found 30 shell casings at the scene, fired from multiple guns, CBS Baltimore reports

"I can tell you one of the victims was shot ten times. Another of the victims was shot four times," says Captain Darren Francke with Montgomery County Police.

At graduation, D'Andrea said all those attending had heavy hearts, but Najjar and Ziberov "would want us to move forward today and celebrate."

The principal also said he spoke with Ziberov's mother and she said, "I hope everyone has a great celebration today."