Accused Murderer Captured after 33 Years

( – A murder suspect who fled the country three decades ago was extradited to the U.S. from Costa Rica to await trial for the deadly deed. Jose Lazaro Cruz was charged with stabbing his wife, Ana Jurado, in West Falls Church, Virginia in 1991. Both Cruz and his wife were 24 years old at the time. She had three kids at the time of her death.

Cruz fled across the southern border and settled in El Salvador, which had no extradition treaty with the U.S. Virginia detectives pursued Cruz in 1999, acquiring crucial intelligence about his location and keeping the case alive.

Cruz was busted in 2022 attempting to cross the border in Costa Rica, it took years to have his extradition finalized and he’s now being held in Fairfax County prison awaiting a trial. Police released images of Cruz, showing his younger self when he fled the country compared to a recent photograph taken during his extradition.

Deputy Chief of Investigations Eli Cory relayed that Cruz had remarried in El Salvador and continued to live a normal life. He had several children, and worked a regular job as a truck driver. Cruz was captured attempting to visit family in Costa Rica.

Fairfax County Police Chief Kevin Davis said that his department never forgot the family of the woman he allegedly stabbed to death.

The story is reminiscent of another manhunt outside of Philadelphia last year. Danelo Cavalcante escaped from a prison on August 31st and was on the run for two weeks before finally being captured.

Police spent days combing forests and cornfields in Chester County, PA looking for Cavalcante after his escape. He had escaped from an area prison after a conviction for murdering his previous girlfriend.

An elite Border Patrol unit from El Paso aided in the arrest. A trained dog named Yoda aided in the capture and arrest of the fugitive. Police said that the dog bit Cavalcante during the arrest, but the wound was minor.

After detecting his body’s heat signature by aircraft, officials sent in the ground units including Yoda’s handler and his team. They quickly busted the suspect and were able to return him to prison without incident.

Copyright 2024,