A California man who was on the run and considered armed and dangerous after allegedly killing his girlfriend and her two sons has been arrested, authorities said.
Louis Gabriel Lucero was arrested on Thursday after deputies apprehended him in Eagle County, Colorado, on an unrelated charge, according to a statement from the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department.
Lucero—a 35-year-old from Victorville, California—is currently being held in Colorado on the unrelated charge, which was not specified, as well as the warrant for the homicides, police said.
The suspect is scheduled to appear at an extradition hearing before returning to San Bernardino County in Southern California.
— San Bernardino County Sheriff (@sbcountysheriff) April 30, 2020
Deputies with the Victorville Sheriff’s Department responded to a call around 11 a.m. Wednesday from a home on Ferndale Road.
Responding officers “discovered signs of a struggle inside” the home and learned that Lucero was living inside the resident together with his girlfriend—42-year-old Erlinda Villareal, police said.
“Villareal and Lucero were not at the home when deputies arrived and had not been seen or heard from since early Wednesday morning,” according to the statement.
Police also said that Villareal is the mother of two sons aged 9 and 12 who police were also unable to find. Authorities did not release the identity of the boys.
Investigating detectives tried to locate the missing persons and their vehicle, a silver-colored 2008 Ford Explorer, but were unsuccessful.
That same day just after 5:30 p.m., the sheriff’s department dispatch “received a call from a person off-roading in the desert area” in Apple Valley, California, police said. The caller had located three human bodies in the desert.
Homicide detectives that responded to the call determined that “the victims left the Ferndale Road home with Lucero and were murdered at an unknown location, then left in the desert area where they were found.”
Authorities said Lucero must have fled the desert area in his SUV to Colorado after committing the murders. Colorado authorities arrested him on Thursday and are currently holding him without bond at Eagle County Detention Center.
It has not been confirmed whether he has an attorney.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.