As clouds blocked the sun late Thursday morning, Lodi police officers placed yellow crime scene tape around a section of Hale Park where a 46-year-old woman was found dead in a suspected homicide.

According to Lodi Police Lt. Shad Canestrino, a local transient called police at approximately 10:30 a.m. Thursday after finding the victim — Christina Cantu, also a transient — lying unresponsive on the grass near North Stockton Street between East Elm East Locust streets.

“We know she’s been staying here quite often, so it’s not uncommon to see her or her belongings (in the area),” Canestrino said.

Detectives believe Cantu was killed between 2:30 a.m. and 3 a.m. Thursday, according to an email from Canestrino.

“She suffered multiple gunshot wounds,” Canestrino said in the email. “We know a vehicle was involved.”

Officers have not yet identified the vehicle or any suspects, and there is currently no known motive.

This is Lodi’s second homicide of 2019, after the fatal shooting of 34-year-old Rafael Morfin in late February.

The investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information regarding the homicide should call Lodi Police Detective Alberto Perez at 209-333-6870. Those wishing to remain anonymous can call the Lodi Area Crime Stoppers at 209-369-2746.

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