SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – A man who allegedly shot a woman to death inside a running SUV in what police say is an apparent act of domestic violence, was arraigned in a Springfield courtroom Tuesday. Pedro Vasquez, 40, of Springfield is charged with murder in connection with the killing of 30 year-old Yahaira Hernandez.
A not guilty plea was entered on Vasquez’s behalf Thursday afternoon in Springfield District Court. He was held without the right to bail pending further review.
Springfield Police Sgt. John Delaney told 22News that police found Hernandez’s body early Monday morning inside an SUV that was parked on Scott Street. The vehicle’s engine was revving loudly. Officers had initially thought that the woman was simply asleep behind the wheel until they got closer and discovered she had been fatally shot.
In addition to murder, Vasquez is charged with discharging a firearm within 500 feet of a dwelling, possession of a firearm in the commission of a felony, and carrying a loaded firearm.
He is due back in court on February 4.
The Monday morning shooting marked the second homicide in the city in just the first five days of 2015. An 18 year-old man died on New Year’s Day at the hospital, a short time after being shot on Mill Street.