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Connecticut man convicted of killing two New York men in southeastern Massachusetts motel has parole request denied



A Hartford, CT man convicted of killing two New York men in a southeastern Massachusetts motel room has had his parole request denied.

According to the Massachusetts Parole Board, on November 3, 1999, in Barnstable Superior Court, Carlos Lopez pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree murder in the deaths of Jose Vasquez and Wilfredo Hernandez and was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole. The concurrent life sentences were ordered to run consecutive to a sentence of 4 1/2 to 5 years for larceny from a person.

The Board concluded by unanimous vote that Lopez was not a suitable candidate for parole.

Lopez appeared before the Parole Board for a review hearing on January 12, 2023. Lopez was denied parole at his initial hearing in 2018.

Information provided by the Board stated that on May 9, 1998, Vasquez and Hernandez were discovered in the early morning hours at the American Holiday Motel in Yarmouth. The cause of death for both individuals was blunt force trauma to the head. In a statement to authorities, Lopez indicated that he met the two men in New York City and agreed to join them on a trip to Massachusetts. In Massachusetts, the group engaged in an electronics store scam, while staying at the hotel. Lopez claimed that on the night of May 9, 1998, both men began making unwanted sexual advances towards him. He reached around, grabbed a large battery off the ground, and struck the first man in the head. The men fell off the bed. Lopez then struck the second man who fell to the floor. Lopez took money from one of the victims for bus fare back to Hartford. Lopez fled to Puerto Rico, but was apprehended at the San Juan airport. He was extradited back to Massachusetts on July 25, 1998.

Lopez has incurred several serious disciplinary infractions over the course of his incarceration. His last infraction occurred in 2015, for an aggravated assault on another inmate in the kitchen, resulting in a 12-month placement in the Disciplinary Detention Unit. In 2012 and 2006, Lopez was involved in an aggravated assault on another inmate, resulting in the inmate having to be treated at an outside hospital. Lopez engaged in repeated, serious incidences of violence for 15 years, according to the Board, resulting in several special management placements and a DDU sanction. Additionally, the Department of Correction considers Lopez a validated member of a security threat group which he disputes.

The Board stated that Lopez has not demonstrated a level of rehabilitative progress that would make his release compatible with the welfare of society. Lopez has had a challenging institutional adjustment which has improved in recent years. The Board encourages Lopez to continue to pursue his GED. He should also engage in programming to address anger management. The Board finds that Lopez would benefit from counseling or programming to address his own trauma history and victimization.

Lopez’s next appearance before the Board will take place in two years.

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