Prudencio Ramirez stands accused of killing his 18-year-old girlfriend and her three-year-old son in Washington State. Family members suspect jealousy may have led to the gruesome slayings of the teen and her son, who were found shot and severely burned in a remote part of Franklin County.
Maria G. Cruiz-Calvillo, and Luis F. Lopez-Cruz were identified on Monday July 6th as the bodies found last week inside a vehicle that was set on fire in a ravine near the intersection of Scootney and Ridge roads. Luis likely was still alive when the car went up in flames, according to Franklin County coroner. Luis would have turned four years old on today Thursday July 9th…
Fragos-Ramirez was arrested hours into the investigation at his home less than a mile from where the bodies were found. Prosecutors say Fragos-Ramirez was deported in 2014 and got back into the country illegally.
Family members had never met Fragos-Ramirez, though Cruiz-Calvillo talked to her mother about a guy she was seeing, whom she apparently referred to by the nickname “Loco,” Rodriguez said.
“(The family) thinks she never wanted a serious relationship with him,” Rodriguez said. “It’s jealousy.”
Family members last saw Cruiz-Calvillo the afternoon of her death as she was leaving Othello with Luis for Pasco to make a car payment, court documents said. She routinely went to Pasco to make car payments.
“We checked with the bank,” Rodriguez said. “She made the payment at 3:43 (p.m.).”
2 neighbors saw Cruiz-Calvillo and Luis arrive at Fragos-Ramirez’s home about 4:40 p.m., court documents said. The neighbors recognized the mother and son because they frequent the house on Hogback Road.
Between 10 and 20 minutes later, the neighbors saw the pair and Fragos-Ramirez walking towards Cruiz-Calvillo’s car, court documents said. They didn’t see Fragos-Ramirez return to the house and didn’t see him again until about 7 p.m.
Smoke was spotted coming from the ravine where the bodies were found about 20 to 30 minutes after the trio was seen leaving the home. It took detectives eight minutes to drive from the home to the spot where the bodies were found. Detectives were able to track down Fragos-Ramirez for an interview after Cruiz-Calvillo’s brother, Arturo Calvillo, remembered meeting a man who matched the description of Fragos-Ramirez while at a house on church business. Calvillo took Detective Jason Nunez to the house, and Nunez contacted a woman there.
The woman told Nunez she had a brother who was at the house when Calvillo came over. She called Fragos-Ramirez and handed the phone to Nunez, who then set up an interview.
Fragos-Ramirez told Nunez he last had contact with Cruiz-Calvillo about 2:30 p.m. the day she was killed and had not heard from or seen her since. Nunez arrested Fragos-Ramirez on an outstanding warrant and booked him into jail.
After Nunez spoke to the neighbors, he interviewed Fragos-Ramirez again. Fragos-Ramirez claimed Cruiz-Calvillo came to his house about 5:10 p.m. to bring him cigarettes.
“He said he last saw (Cruiz-Calvillo) and her son leaving his property in her vehicle,” Nunez wrote in a probable cause affidavit. “He said her son was in the back seat in a child seat.”
Nunez searched Fragos-Ramirez’s home and found three clean boxes of .9-mm ammunition stashed in a tire in a dusty shed on the property, court documents said. Fragos-Ramirez admitted to recently having a .9-mm handgun, but claimed he sold it to Cruiz-Calvillo three days before the murders for $300 “because he needed the money for a party he was throwing that day.”
Fragos-Ramirez claimed his brother, Isabel Fragoza, had seen him sell the gun to Cruiz-Calvillo.
Fragoza denied the claim and told Nunez he had seen his brother with a handgun recently, but didn’t know what happened to the gun.
Authorities booked Fragos-Ramirez for two counts of first-degree murder after determining he was seen with the victims shortly before they were killed and that he was unaccounted for when they died.
Prosecutors said in court Monday that Fragos-Ramirez could possibly be charged with aggravated first-degree murder, which carries an automatic sentence of life in prison if convicted.
Rodriguez said her family is having trouble understanding how someone could take the life of a child so violently.