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Patrol vehicles lined Alta Avenue near Springfield Avenue on the night of March 23. Fresno County Sheriff’s detectives discovered the body of 75-year-old Andres Cardenas of Dinuba. Cardenas had been fatally shot.

Mohamed Ahmed, a cashier at the Sunrise Mini Mart on Alta and Dinuba Avenues, just east of Reedley, let out an audible gasp on the afternoon of March 24.

“Oh my gosh, is that what happened?” he said after finding out that the body of a man was found shot to death in a nearby orchard. “I was wondering why there were so many cops around here last night.”

It was just one day prior, on the night of March 23 after 7:30 p.m. — less than a mile from Ahmed’s work — that 75-year-old Andres Cardenas was found dead from an apparent gunshot wound.

Multiple Fresno County Sheriff’s vehicles lined the 22000 block of East Springfield Avenue near Alta Avenue. As their flashing red and blue patrol lights lit up the otherwise dark county road and their yellow crime scene tape draped several rows of the orchards, investigators worked to piece together what happened. 

“I didn’t even hear gunshots,” Ahmed said. “Later I seen the helicopter, and I seen the ambulance and all that. I was shocked, I seen cops going over there and I thought it was something else.”

“I never knew what happened,” he continued. “I never knew that someone had been shot and killed.”

According to information released from the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office, deputies were dispatched to the property after receiving reports of an injured person. They learned from family members that Cardenas was last seen alive sometime between the hours of noon and 7 p.m. on March 23.

Ahmed has worked at the convenience store for two years. He said violence is not common in the area. 

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