According to the Atascosa County Sheriff’s Office, a 27-year-old man has been arrested for the double homicide and subsequent arson of his housemates. Sherriff David Soward stated that on June 29 at around 2 a.m., a guy who had been staying in a house in the 100 block of Peach Tree in Leming came home to discover it on fire.
The man tried to enter, but the smoke was too thick. The home’s owner, Laura West, 43, from Leming, was found dead when firefighters finally arrived to put out the blaze. Soward claimed West was killed by a head shot. Mary Heinz, 33, from Leming, her roommate, had vanished.
Soward said that all of Heinz’s things, including her car, were still in the house, but she herself was missing. The ACSO claims that six days of intensive inquiry followed after West’s death to uncover more information about Heinz’s disappearance. Before naming a suspect on Monday, investigators gathered evidence and reviewed security footage.
The tweet below verifies the news:
A 27-year-old man is behind bars after a double homicide involving a pair of roommates, which was followed by an intentional fire, according to the Atascosa County Sheriff’s Office. https://t.co/OvCMutVw2S
— KSAT 12 (@ksatnews) July 5, 2023
According to Soward, the suspect, 27-year-old Rosendo Jesus Montoya, was a former boyfriend of Heinz’s. According to the sheriff, on July 4, investigators followed Montoya to his job at a fast food restaurant in Pleasanton.
Soward claims that at 9 o’clock that night, Montoya was seen driving up to a dumpster, exiting the car, and disposing of two garbage bags into the bins. About 45 minutes after Montoya left work, ACSO deputies pulled up to interview him.
Simultaneously, the sheriff stated that when an investigator retrieved the trash bags from the dumpster, they included pieces of human bones. Soward claimed that while being questioned by Jourdanton law enforcement, Montoya admitted to shooting and killing both ladies.
The following links are given as a courtesy for those interested in reading more from the California Examiner:
- Mass Shootings on the Fourth of July Claim 20 Lives and Injure 126 More
- Lawyer Whose License Was Revoked After a Complaint From His Father Was Arrested for His Murder
Montoya, according to Soward, “was basically obsessed with Mary Heinz.” Five miles north of Poteet, the sheriff said Montoya led investigators to the spot where Heinz’s body was found next to a county road.
The remains were discovered next to a fence and some tall grass at the side of the road. According to Soward, Heinz had been dead for some days. The ACSO is awaiting good results before disclosing the date of her death.
The arson investigation has been opened by the Atascosa County Fire Marshal’s Office. According to Soward, the fire is thought to have been started in the living room in an effort to destroy evidence. At the Atascosa County Jail, Montoya is being held on a $1 million bond for capital murder charges.
The California Examiner is a must-follow for anyone interested in immediate updates to the news.