Man pleads not guilty to nightclub shooting in Auburn

King County prosecutors say a jealous Cesar Chaparro-Vielma, 42, shot his estranged wife, Blanca Arroyos, her boyfriend, Marco Hernandez-Maradiaga his wife's two sisters and three bystanders in the early morning hours of July 24 inside the crowded Galaxy nightclub at the Muckleshoot Casino.

King County prosecutors say a jealous Cesar Chaparro-Vielma, 42, shot his estranged wife, Blanca Arroyos, her boyfriend, Marco Hernandez-Maradiaga his wife’s two sisters and three bystanders in the early morning hours of July 24 inside the crowded Galaxy nightclub at the Muckleshoot Casino.

On Tuesday, the Covington man pleaded not guilty to seven counts of first-degree assault. Each count includes a firearm sentencing enhancement. Chaparro-Vielma could spend from 89 to 101 years in prison. He remains in jail, with bail set at $1 million.

Auburn Police Detective Aaron Williams’s account, based on video surveillance and witness interviews, is as follows:

Chaparro-Vielma first came to the casino at midnight to confront his estranged wife. The two argued, he grabbed her, shook her and left.

At about 1:09 a.m., Williams’ account continues, Chaparro-Vielma returned and made his way across the dance floor to where his intended victims were dancing and allegedly began firing.

According to Williams’ account, surveillance video shows Chaparro-Vielma first approaching Hernandez-Maradiaga. He pulled out his gun with his left hand and fired at least two rounds at Hernandez-Maradiaga’s head. Somehow Hernandez-Maradiaga only received grazing wounds to the back of his head and fell down.

According to Williams account, Chaparro-Vielma gripped the gun with both hands and fired at his wife, then standing near her fallen boyfriend. She ducked and her sister, Etelvina, standing behind her, was shot in the face and fell to the ground.

According to Williams’ account, Blanca could be seen on the video on her knees in front of her husband, apparently trying to grab him, but he allegedly squeezed out a single shot, striking her in her right chest.

As that was happening, Williams’ account continues, the estranged wife’s other sister, Veronica Arroyos, tried to grab the gun. She struggled with Chaparro-Vielma for a split second before releasing him, turning and starting to run. Chaparro-Vielma raised his gun and fired once, possibly twice, hitting her in the back, according to Williams’ account.

According to Williams, Chaparro-Vielma then put the gun to his left temple and began to walk out of the club, but a casino security officer met him, tackled him, and took his gun.

Medics transported Hernandez-Maradiaga, Blanca Arroyos, Etalvina Morales-Arroyos and Veronica Arroyos to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle. Doctors released Hernandez-Maradiaga later that day with non-life-threatening injuries. Blanca Arroyos and her sister, Etalvina Morales-Arroyos, were listed in critical but stable condition. Veronica Arroyos was released from the hospital several days later.

Bystanders Taniela Niutupuivahai, Crystal Dandridge-Jackson and Kristen Anderson were transported to Valley Regional Medical Center with non-life-threatening injuries. Doctors treated and later released them all.

According to Williams’ account, Chaparro-Vielma later admitted to police that he had followed his estranged wife and her new boyfriend to the casino. He said he “couldn’t stand it” any more, so he walked up to the couple and opened fire.

According to Williams’ account, Chaparro-Vielma said of the shooting, “I think I made a mistake.”


In consideration of how we voice our opinions in the modern world, we’ve closed comments on our websites. We value the opinions of our readers and we encourage you to keep the conversation going.

Please feel free to share your story tips by emailing editor@auburn-reporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.auburn-reporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) We reserve the right to edit letters, but if you keep yours to 300 words or less, we won’t ask you to shorten it.

More in News

Aerial view of the Amtrak Cascades train derailment in 2017 near DuPont, Wash. Courtesy Wikipedia
Amtrak, Sound Transit and the state all named in derailment lawsuit

It was filed on behalf of the family of a teenager who was paralyzed in the 2017 crash.

City to vote on overhaul of fireworks ordinance

Proposed changes include penalties for selling or discharging fireworks outside appointed times

COURTESY PHOTO
Mountain View Fire and Rescue commissioners to meet on M&O levy resolution

Measure could be on August primary election ballot

Needles littered the ground throughout a homeless encampment at Federal Way’s Hylebos Wetlands, which is public property. Sound Publishing file photo
Republican leadership doubts effectiveness of homelessness spending

Democrats propose hundreds of millions toward affordable housing.

King County approves low-income Metro fare waivers

Low-income transit riders could see their King County Metro fares waived beginning… Continue reading

Sheriff Mitzi Johanknecht gave a response to an Office of Law Enforcement Oversight report on Feb. 25 before the King County Law and Justice Committee. The report recommended ways her department could reform use of force policy and internal investigations. Aaron Kunkler/staff photo
Council unsatisfied with Sheriff’s response to use of deadly force report

The King County Sheriff’s Office could be required to explain why it didn’t implement recommendations.

Hatchers awarded MLK Medal of Distinguished Service

Auburn couple honored for their work to help others in the community

King County Council has nine members who each represent a district. Courtesy of kingcounty.gov
Charter amendments could allow King County Council to remove elected officials

The change was recommended by the charter review commission.

Voters could vote to affirm subpoena powers for civilian KCSO oversight agency

The King County charter review commission recommended enshrining the power in the charter.

Most Read