DNA on soda bottle links Christian Romero to murder scene

DNA recovered at the scene of the murder of Dimas Fuentes-Lazo,38, from the mouth of a Coca-Cola bottle, a knife and a broken watch connect 23-year-old Christian Romero to the scene of the crime, along with witness testimonies and video surveillance footage, according to the charging documents.

The fight between Romero and Lazo seems to have stemmed from an argument after Romero was seen smacking side mirrors of cars, including Lazo’s.

Lazo was stabbed to death on April 23 after an argument outside of a restaurant at 833 Kennedy St., NW. Police were called to the scene and arrived around 10:45 p.m. where they found Lazo suffering from multiple deep stab wounds around his face, upper chest and arms. He was taken to an area hospital where he later died of his injuries.

According to one witness and video surveillance footage, a man, later identified as Romero was at the scene before Lazo arrived, holding a bottle of soda. Another witness, who arrived on the scene with Lazo, said that they arrived to the restaurant in Lazo’s vehicle and before entering, stood outside and smoked cigarettes. While they were standing there, the witness said that Romero walked down the street hitting cars with his hand holding a bottle of soda. The suspect reportedly hit the driver’s side mirror on Lazo’s vehicle.

The witness said that they went to look at the damage on the vehicle, and that suspect and Lazo followed. According to the witness account in the warrant, Romero confronted both the witness and Lazo in front of the vehicle at a close distance and in a “seemingly threatening manner.” Video obtained by police confirms this account, and shows the witness kicked Romero in the leg and Romero then pulled out a knife and attacked Lazo. The suspect chased Lazo and stabbed him repeatedly. The suspect fell to the ground and was kicked by Lazo, but then continued to chase and stab Lazo.

There were three other people who were investigated for Lazo’s murder. Fransisco Ayala was arrested and charged with second-degree murder on May 10 in connection to Lazo’s death. Ayala provided an alibi and all charges were dropped. Ayala’s DNA was not found on any of the evidence collected.

Romero was charged with second-degree murder while armed on June 30. He is scheduled to appear in court on July 15 for a preliminary hearing at 9:30 a.m.


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