Christian Birdsall, 16, and Cody Nicosia, 18, hid outside the home of Barbara Latiolais waiting for her to leave so they could rob the house but when she remained at home, they strangled her in cold blood, stole her car and had lunch in Castro Valley, Alameda County Sheriff's alleged Friday morning.
"This is the kind of case fear and nightmares are made of," said Sgt. J.D. Nelson at a press conference where they announced that both suspects were cooperating with authorities and would be tried as adults.
The brutality of the murder/arson shocked even the investigators on the case.
Firefighters found the body of Latiolais while putting out a blaze in the home at 2431 San Carlos Avenue that she shared with her long-time partner, Michael Rice.
Rice, 60, a retired San Franciso firefighter, was out of town at the time and was not a suspect, authorities said.
On Wednesday, authorities published a sketch of a short, dark-complected male in his late teens who was seen in the vicinity of the crime.
This suspect, Birdsall, abandoned a 2006 black Volvo SUV -- stolen from the victim's home -- at the end of Brookdale Boulevard a few hours after the attack.
This story will be updated.