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Family makes appeal for tips in Chula Vista double murder case

Family makes appeal for tips in Chula Vista double murder case
Posted at 5:06 PM, Sep 09, 2022

CHULA VISTA, Calif. (KGTV) - A grieving mother is on the hunt for answers after a double murder in Chula Vista street claimed two of her loved ones.

“I can’t believe it. I still can’t believe it,” said Deborah Schlemmer.

A week and a half later, Schlemmer says she's still numb. Video of the aftermath shows a truck after it collided with a parked van on Brandywine Avenue.

Police believe the two men inside the truck were driving away after they had been shot - less than a block away - near Valle Lindo Park.

Those two men were 22-year-old Joseph Arias, and his stepdad, 42-year-old David Bruley.

“I was so distraught. I didn't even know what to think,” said a tearful Schlemmer, who is Bruley’s mother.

Hours after she learned the two had been shot and rushed to a hospital, the two men died.

“Why this senseless thing? Why would someone want to do something so horrible?” asked Schlemmer.

Schlemmer says her son, who worked in construction, was father to a 7-year-old girl.

“He’s a good dad. He’s nice. He’s a teddy bear,” said Schlemmer.

She says Arias, her step-grandson, who also worked in construction, had a 3-year-old daughter.

“He’s a great dad. He’s a hard worker, a great friend,” said Schlemmer.

As detectives try to unravel the mystery of their murders, it appears Arias' movements may provide clues.

Schlemmer says before the shooting, Arias was hanging with friends and then contacted his stepdad and showed up at his door in the College Area.

“His face, eye was shut, black and blue and all beat up. And all we know is they got in a car together and left,” said Schlemmer.

What happened next remains unknown.

Schlemmer is now appealing to the public to help fill in the pieces.

“We need justice for this. Everybody needs to find out who did this. We need to get these people taken off the streets as soon as we can,” said Schlemmer.

Witnesses report seeing vehicles fleeing the area at the time of the shooting, but there are no vehicle descriptions.

Anyone with information is asked to contact San Diego County Crime Stoppers at 888-580-8477 or submit a tip via P3tips (online or mobile application)

Gofundme campaigns have been set up to help the families of Bruley and Arias with funeral and other expenses.