A warrant was issued Wednesday for a Kent man accused of killing another man in May because the suspect thought the victim was an informant in a federal drug case, according to King County prosecutors.
Juan Felipe Galeana-Madrigal, 32, was charged Wednesday with first-degree murder in connection with the death of 29-year-old Francisco Mendoza on May 7 in Kirkland.
Galeana-Madrigal has been wanted on a warrant since July, when he failed to appear for arraignment on unrelated felony domestic violence charges, according to the charges filed in connection with Mendoza’s death.
He is described as Hispanic, 5 feet 5 and 130 pounds with brown eyes and black hair, Kirkland police said. Police said Galeana-Madrigal typically wears a goatee and has the word “Familia” tattooed on the right side of his head.
Galeana-Madrigal — who goes by the street name “Pelon” and uses the alias Jose Gerardo De Dios Medrano — was last known to be in Southern California’s Palm Desert area in September, police said.
Anyone with information about his whereabouts are asked to call 911. Crime Stoppers of Puget Sound, 800-222-TIPS (8477), is offering a $1,000 reward for information leading to his arrest.
According to charging papers, Mendoza was shot at his Kirkland home where the men were eating takeout from a fast-food restaurant.
“The defendant deliberately executed the victim by shooting him twice in the head at close range because the victim owed him money and because he suspected that the victim was a ‘snitch’ who had cooperated with law enforcement in a federal narcotics investigation,” Senior Deputy Prosecutor Jessica Berliner wrote in charging documents.
Kirkland police say Mendoza sold heroin and methamphetamine that he obtained from Galeana-Madrigal, according to the charges.
A neighbor called 911 to report hearing gunshots and told officers a man had left the cul-de-sac in a white pickup moments later, charging papers say.
At the scene, police found five shell casings and noticed two fast-food meals on a table next to the chair where Mendoza had been seated, charging papers say.
Statements from Mendoza’s housemates and other confidential witnesses, along with video surveillance footage from a nearby restaurant as well from businesses near the Tulalip Casino helped police identify Galeana-Madrigal as a suspect, the charges say.
Two witnesses said that after Mendoza’s death Galeana-Madrigal referred to him as “a rat” and admitted to shooting him, the papers say.