Search for Suspect Goes Nationwide

John Diedrich, Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, May 31, 2006

Milwaukee police have launched a nationwide search that may reach into Mexico for a man suspected of shooting five people and killing two of them in South Shore Park on Memorial Day, a commander said Wednesday.

Police suspect Octaviano Juarez-Corro, 33, killed a man, 31, and a boy, 17, and injured three others—all people police say he knew.

Juarez-Corro was in the United States illegally and has ties to Mexico, prompting Milwaukee detectives to notify border officers to watch for him, said police Capt. Timothy Burkee, commander of the homicide division.

A temporary warrant has been issued and sent to all law enforcement in the U.S., he said. The television show “America’s Most Wanted” also has agreed to post information on Juarez-Corro on its Web site.

Burkee said detectives are still exploring whether Juarez-Corro fled to Mexico. The majority of people wanted on homicide warrants in Milwaukee are suspected of being in Mexico, according to files from the Police Department and prosecutors.

Because of a 1978 treaty and a 2001 court ruling, Mexico generally has refused to return suspects to the United States if they face the death penalty or a life-without-parole sentence, paving the way for thousands of suspected drug kingpins and killers to flee to Mexico to avoid U.S. prosecution. Treaties let the U.S. get fugitives from other countries that, like Mexico, do not allow the death penalty, but fugitives don’t flee to those countries in significant numbers, officials said this year when the Journal Sentinel examined the issue.

Late last year, 20 of the 23 suspects wanted on homicide or attempted homicide charges in Milwaukee were Hispanic—and most are suspected of being in Mexico or other Latin American countries, according to police. At least one of those suspects has since been arrested.

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