Friday, March 30, 2012

Deputies: Homicide Suspect May Have Fled Country

Detectives believe a man suspected of killing a 24-year-old man in Immokalee on Monday may have fled to Mexico.

Detectives with the Collier County Sheriff’s Office’s Major Crimes Bureau secured an arrest warrant Friday morning charging Lemuel Meza Cruz, 33, with second-degree murder in the slaying of Juan Flores Monroy, 24, 321 Wells St., Immokalee.

Witnesses told detectives that Meza Cruz and Flores Monroy got into an argument in an open field near the 200 block of Wells Street around 9 p.m. Monday. The argument led to a physical altercation in which Meza Cruz stabbed Flores Monroy with a knife.

Flores Monroy staggered along a footpath to the side of the road, where his body was discovered by a passing motorist shortly after 8 a.m. Tuesday.

The Collier County Medical Examiner’s Office determined the manner of death to be homicide.

By checking flight manifests, detectives found Meza Cruz was listed as a passenger on a flight out of Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport in Atlanta bound for Mexico City, Mexico, around 5:30 p.m. Tuesday.

CCSO has contacted federal authorities for assistance in apprehending Meza Cruz, whose last known address was 610 Booker Blvd. in Immokalee, detectives said.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Collier County Sheriff’s Office at 239.252.9300, or if you wish to remain anonymous call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-780-TIPS (8477).

Detectives have released this photo of Meza Cruz: