Dysabel Munguia was a young girl the night of July 1, 2008, when her mother laid down beside her and instructed her to try to stay awake. But she couldn’t do it.
“When I woke up the next morning, we couldn’t find her,” Munguia, now 21, recalled at an FBI news conference here Monday, more than nine years after her mother was kidnapped and killed and her father was charged with the crime and became a fugitive. “Everything just felt like a nightmare, and I felt like I was to blame because I was supposed to stay up.”
She appeared alongside state and federal law enforcement agents as the FBI announced that it was adding 41-year-old Jesus Roberto Munguia to its “Ten Most Wanted Fugitives” list. His daughter wept as she asked the public for help finding him and remembered her mother, Sherryl Sacueza, who was 29 when she was killed.
The couple were estranged at the time of the killing. The two had accused each other of infidelity, and Munguia had threatened to kill his wife and their four children, according to FBI Special Agent Andrew Attridge, who is investigating the case from the agency’s Las Vegas Division.
Sacueza and the children, ages 6 to 12, left their Las Vegas home, but a few nights later, Munguia persuaded her to return, Attridge said. That is when Munguia allegedly locked the children in the bedroom, forced his wife into the car, drove her to an unknown location and tied her up and beat her to death, possibly with a tire jack.
Authorities believe that Munguia drove the car back to the house and parked it in the driveway with the body inside. Sacueza’s sister found it.
Munguia, who fled, was charged in Nevada with kidnapping and murder with a deadly weapon. Federal authorities charged him with unlawful flight to avoid prosecution.
Attridge had described the killing as “vicious.”
Munguia is the 517th person to be placed on the FBI’s 10 most-wanted list since it was created in 1950 and the sixth from Nevada.
FBI field offices nominate candidates for the list. To make it on, a fugitive must have a long record of committing serious crimes, be a particularly dangerous menace to society and not already be notorious, according to the FBI.
Munguia was born and raised in Los Angeles and has ties to the Southern California gang known as TEPA 13, according to the FBI. He had been a known criminal going back to when he was 18, where he assaulted a police officer with a deadly weapon.
He also was a car thief and had several outstanding warrants for his arrest before the killing, which occurred when he was 31.
Authorities said he goes by aliases that include Mono, Chuy and Miguel — the latter of which is the name of his dead brother. He speaks Spanish. Though Munguia has ties to Los Angeles and Bakersfield, the FBI also believes he could be hiding in Tijuana.
Billboards featuring Munguia’s mug shot and various tattoos — including one on his chest that reads “My Baby Jessica” and one of a teardrop near his left eye — would be placed throughout Nevada and California, said Aaron Rouse, FBI special agent in charge.
He also said the reward for information leading to Munguia’s capture has been increased to $100,000, and he cautioned that he was likely armed and dangerous.
“If you know where he is, tell us,” Rouse said in the public appeal for help.
Sacueza’s mother, Noema Gonzalez, also appeared at the news conference. She fought back tears as she remembered learning about the killing.
“My big nightmare will never be ended,” she said.