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Homicide investigated in Hilmar
Dominick Jeffery Rufo
Dominick Jeffery Rufo

The Merced County Sheriff’s Department is investigating the homicide of a man found shot to death at a Hilmar restaurant Sunday night.

The deceased was identified by the sheriff’s department as Jasper Gray, 38.

The sheriff’s department has identified Dominick Jeffery Rufo, 29, as a person of interest in the case and he is wanted for questioning.

The department also is seeking Brandy Ashlyn Bettencourt-Costa, 32. The department said she is wanted for questioning.

Brandy Ashlyn Bettencourt-Costa
Brandy Ashlyn Bettencourt-Costa is wanted by the Merced County Sheriff's Department for questioning regarding the shooting of Jasper Gray Sunday night in Hilmar.

Deputies were dispatched to the restaurant on Lander Avenue in Hilmar at 7:15 p.m. for a report of a shooting.

Gray was found at the scene dead from a gunshot wound.

Investigators would like to speak with any potential witnesses to the shooting.

“We know there were a lot of people here tonight,” said sheriff spokesman Dep. Daryl Allen on Sunday night. “We would like anybody that was in the diner at the time when this happened … to please contact our dispatch.”

If anyone has any information regarding Rufo’s or Bettencourt-Costa’s whereabouts or regarding the homicide investigation, please contact the Merced County Sheriff’s Office Investigations Bureau at (209) 385-7472. Any information given can remain anonymous and could help solve this crime.