Police investigating suspicious death of Woodhaven resident

By Gina Martinez

Police have ruled the death of a 24-year-old Woodhaven man was a homicide.

Efrain Vargas was found in the bedroom basement of his 91st Street home Sunday by a friend, according to police. When officers arrived at 3:30 p.m., they found Vargas unresponsive with multiple stab wounds and burn marks, police said. He had reportedly been dead for days.

Friends and neighbors have expressed their grief on social media. Woodhaven resident Fausto Abad was an old friend and said Vargas had a troubled life.

“In a way I’m surprised that this happened and at the same time I’m not,” he said. “When we were kids trouble always found Efrain. He was a cool kid, never meant any harm or wanted anything bad to happen to anyone, but sadly life was harsh for him. He had been though a lot. Just when it seemed life was getting better for him, this happens. It’s really sad.”

A neighbor also expressed his surprise at Vargas’ death.

“At first I didn’t even know what happened until the next day, but it’s always surprising when you hear about something like that happening to someone you’ve seen around before a couple of times. It’s pretty sad.”

According to police, Vargas had nine previous arrests. In 2016 he was arrested for resisting arrest and in 2015 he was arrested for reckless endangerment, police said.

Officers said investigations were ongoing and the medical examiner will determine the cause of death.

Reach Gina Martinez by e-mail at gmartinez@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260–4566.

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