By David Rose
The FBI is adding accused Tacoma double murder suspect Santiago “Pucho” Villalba Mederos to its “Ten Most Wanted Fugitives” list. He is accused of killing 20-year-old Camille Love and wounding her brother on Feb. 7, 2010.
“She was my only daughter. I was the first person to hold her when she was born,” said William Love.
The FBI is offering a reward of up to $100,000 for information leading directly to the arrest of Mederos.
“He just comes from behind us and gets in the lane next to us, speeds up to us, gets beside us and he just started shooting,” Joshua Love told Washington’s Most Wanted in 2010. “She wasn’t moving. I grabbed the side of her face and I was like, ‘Cami, Cami!’ She had a blank look on her face.”
The two innocent victims were not involved in gang activity and police say he targeted them solely because of the color of their vehicle. He is also accused of killing a 21-year-old man when he shot him on March 25, 2010.
“Pucho” may be in Mexico. He speaks both English and Spanish. He is known to have ties to the states of Guerrero and Morelos in Mexico. In Mexico, he may be known as “Santiago Mederos Villalba.”
Acting United States Marshal Jacob Green stated, “We are committed to bringing justice for the victims and their families. I would like to thank the public ahead of time for any assistance that may lead to the capture of this murder suspect.”
On Dec. 2, 2010 Mederos was charged with murder in the first degree, attempted murder in the first degree, conspiracy to commit murder in the first degree, and unlawful possession of a firearm in the second degree in the Superior Court of Washington for Pierce County, and a warrant was issued for his arrest. On Sept. 30, 2016 a federal arrest warrant was issued for Mederos in the United States District Court, Western District of Washington, in Tacoma, after he was charged with unlawful flight to avoid prosecution. The Tacoma Police Department is investigating the murders and other criminal activity. The FBI is assisting with the international investigation. The Pierce County Prosecutor’s Office and the U.S. Attorney’s Office filed the charges as part of this collaborative effort to seek justice for the victims.
“We have an all-star team of investigators and prosecutors working together because we are committed to bringing a cold-blooded killer to justice,” said Special Agent in Charge Jay S. Tabb, Jr., of the FBI’s Seattle Field Office. “The Tacoma police did an exceptional job of investigating these horrific shootings, and we’re now offering a large sum of money because it is imperative that we get the murderer off the streets and provide closure for the families of multiple innocent victims.”
“Our investigation revealed that Santiago Mederos is responsible for the homicide of two victims in the city of Tacoma,” said Chief Don Ramsdell of the Tacoma Police Department. “Since 2010, Mederos has evaded prosecution by possibly fleeing to Mexico. Adding Mederos to the FBI’s ‘Ten Most Wanted Fugitives’ list as well as increasing the reward for his capture will be a substantial step toward his capture and prosecution of these crimes. I want the victims’ families to know that we will not stop searching for Mederos until we can bring him to justice.”
Mederos is the 515th person to be placed on the FBI’s “Ten Most Wanted Fugitives” list, and the 10th specifically sought by the FBI’s Seattle Field Office. Mederos is the first FBI Seattle Field Office subject added to the list since 1987, when Darren Dee O’Neall was captured after four months on the list. The FBI’s Seattle Field Office added its first “Ten Most Wanted Fugitive,” Henry Clay Tollett, in 1950, the same year the list was created. Since then, 483 fugitives have been apprehended or located, 161 of them as a result of citizen cooperation.
Individuals with information concerning Mederos should take no action themselves, but should instead immediately contact the nearest FBI office or local law enforcement agency. For possible sightings outside the United States, please contact the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate. The FBI’s Seattle Field Office can be reached at (206) 622-0460. The U.S. Embassy in Mexico City can be reached at 011-52-55-5080-2000. Tips can also be provided online at tips.fbi.gov. Additional information concerning Mederos, including his wanted poster and the FBI’s list of “Ten Most Wanted Fugitives,” can be found by visiting the FBI’s Internet home page at fbi.gov.
This is one of the cases being featured this weekend on “Washington’s Most Wanted,” Saturday at 10 p.m. on JOEtv and midnight on Q13 FOX.