The man suspected of beating two homeless men to death and leaving two others in critical condition in Los Angeles County this month is also wanted for questioning in the disappearance of two of his relatives in Texas, police said.
Ramon Escobar, 47, was captured by police in Santa Monica early Monday and is being held on suspicion of murder in the deaths of two homeless men who were battered with a baseball bat as they slept in downtown Los Angeles. A third man was critically injured in those attacks. He was arrested shortly after he allegedly beat another homeless man in Santa Monica, police said.
After receiving word of his arrest in Southern California, Houston police officials told The Times that Escobar was also a person of interest in the August disappearances of Dina Escobar, 60, and Rogelio Escobar, 65.
Houston Police Lt. Humberto Lopez said the two went missing late last month. Rogelio Escobar was last seen near a convenience store in Houston on Aug. 26 and left a backpack on the porch of his Prudence Drive home the same day.
Foul play is suspected in their disappearances, Lopez said. The charred remains of Dina Escobar’s van were found in Galveston, about 50 miles outside of Houston, a few days later.
“He was their nephew. We are looking to talk to him,” Lopez said. “We learned he was in L.A. Monday from detectives there with the arrest.”
Investigators are also investigating Escobar’s links to the killing of a 39-year-old San Gabriel man who was found beaten to death under the Santa Monica Pier last week and attacks on two other homeless men who suffered blunt force trauma injuries to their heads in early September.
Escobar was arrested in the 600 block of Broadway in Santa Monica shortly before 7:30 a.m. Monday after police responded to an attack on a homeless man in the 1500 block of 7th Street, said Lt. Saul Rodriguez, a Santa Monica police spokesman.
The victim in that case remains unconscious in critical condition, Rodriguez said. The attack bore resemblance to others that have unnerved the homeless community in recent weeks.
10:55 p.m.: Updated with a quote from Houston police.
This article was first published at 10:05 p.m.