Man arrested for 3 murders near SoCal homeless encampments

California

LOS ANGELES — Authorities on Tuesday announced the arrest of a man in connection with the deaths of three people found near homeless encampments in Rancho Dominguez.

Tracy Walker, 56, was booked into jail Feb. 11 on suspicion of killing 26-year-old Patricia Loeza, 26-year-old Kenneth Jones, and 30-year-old Cesar Mazariegos, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

Loeza was discovered down a dirt embankment east of the Compton Creek bed, north of Del Amo Boulevard, on June 7, 2020 just after midnight, officials said. She had stab wounds in her upper torso and was pronounced dead at the scene.

Nearly eight months later, on Jan. 15, Jones was found not far from that location. The man also had stab wounds in his upper torso, and he had suffered blunt force trauma to the head, the Sheriff’s Department said. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Then, on Feb. 9, deputies patrolling the same area came upon Mazariegos. The Sheriff’s Department previously said officers found a body rolled up inside a large carpet, beaten and stabbed. He was declared dead at the scene.

It appeared that all three victims had been staying at homeless encampments at or near the Compton Creek bed, the Sheriff’s Department said.

Detectives linked Walker to the killings and found him at an encampment near the Compton Creek last week, according to officials. He remains in jail on $2 million bail, county inmate records show.

Authorities continue to investigate the killings and provided no further details about the three cases. They urged anyone with information to call the Sheriff’s Department’s homicide bureau at 323-890-5500. Those who wish to remain anonymous can contact “Crime Stoppers” by calling 800-222-TIPS (8477), using the “P3 Tips” mobile app or visiting lacrimestoppers.org.

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