A kindly army veteran who stopped to help a stranded driver was killed by the same man he went to help after it turned out that the motorist was a contract killer hired to kill him.
Carlos Cruz-Echevarría, 60, was killed in "planned execution" on a quiet road in Deltona, Florida, on Veterans Day.
Police say Kelsey Terrance McFoley, 28, paid the alleged hitman Benjamin Jaquaric Antonio Bascom, 24, to kill Cruz-Echevarria and prevent him from testifying against him in a case of anger along the way. Both suspects were arrested this week.
Carlos Cruz-Echevarria, 60, (pictured) was killed in & # 39; planned execution & # 39; on a quiet road in Deltona, Florida on Veterans Day
Detectives say Cruz-Echevarria was driving along a road in Deltona, Florida, in November, when he saw a car that appeared to be stuck in a ditch.
Deciding to be a good Samaritan, he brought his van to try to get the vehicle free. But when he got out of his truck, he was shot to death and his truck was stolen.
Instead, Cruz Echevarria was shot dead and his truck was stolen and later found burned in Apopka, Sheriff's spokesman Andrew Gant told the Orlando Sentinel.
Researchers say the problem began on May 2, 2017, when Cruz-Echevarria was driving in Deltona and honking a vehicle that stopped in the green light.
McFoley arrived at Cruz-Echevarria at the next intersection, pulled out a gun and asked if he had "a problem". according to the police report.
"McFoley reaches into his glove compartment, pulls out a gun and threatens to shoot Carlos," said Sheriff Mike Chitwood.
Police say Kelsey Terrance McFoley, 28, (left) paid alleged hitman Benjamin Jaquaric Antonio Bascom, 24, (right) to kill Cruz-Echevarria
Bascom, McFoley and his girlfriend, Melissa Rios Roque, 21 (pictured), who allegedly conspired with them to commit murder, were arrested on murder charges.
The veteran called the police and was able to provide the record of McFoley's car.
McFoley, a convicted felon with more than two dozen previous charges, was arrested for the case of anger en route on June 1, 2017. If convicted, he would have faced a lengthy prison sentence in view of his previous convictions.
"Somewhere along the line these three bastards decide that Carlos has to die," Chitwood said.
About three weeks before the execution-style murder, McFoley's attorney filed a judicial notice indicating that Cruz-Echevarría would testify in December, which included the address of the witness's address.
Captain. Brian Henderson said that McFoley hired assassin Bascom to kill Cruz-Echevarría to prevent him from making that testimony.
Bascom went to the house of Cruz-Echevarría on November 11, but he was not there, so he stalked the neighborhood in search of his victim.
While turning on the street, he accidentally put his car in a ditch.
It was then that Cruz-Echevarría stopped behind him and offered to help.
Detectives say Cruz-Echevarria was driving on a highway in Deltona, Florida, in November, when he saw a car that seemed to be stuck in a ditch and decided to help (in the photo is the ditch where the car of the alleged murderer was stuck)
Homage has been paid to the 60-year-old businessman, who has a relative who works for the local police.
Meanwhile, the Cruz-Echevarria family is still reconciling with the loss of the & # 39; lover of soft animals & # 39;
When the good Samaritan bent to see the car better, Bascom shot him several times in the head, according to the police.
"It so happened that the good heart of our victim, stopped to help and the stars lined up, unfortunately, and here is trying to help them, it was a stolen car, and they were prepared to burn the car, and finally (Bascom he shoots at him as he leans into the ditch to get this car out of the ditch, so he does not even see it coming, "Henderson said.
For several months, it appeared that Bascom had got away with murder and the charges of anger on the road against McFoley were dropped.
But, finally, DNA evidence could link Bascom to both vehicles, and they could trace their phone records to the scene of the crime. His phone also revealed that he had been in contact with McFoley, who had ordered him to carry out the murder, authorities said.
On Tuesday, McFoley and his girlfriend, Melissa Rios Roque, 21, who allegedly conspired with them to commit murder, were arrested.
Captain. Brian Henderson said that McFoley hired assassin Bascom to kill Cruz-Echevarría, to prevent him from making a testimony.
Bascom was arrested the next day at the Orlando International Airport, where he was about to board a plane to Texas.
All face first-degree murder charges. Chitwood said his department is encouraging prosecutors to pursue the death penalty.
Sheriff Chitwood called the murder: "One of the most heinous, despicable and cowardly acts I have ever witnessed," Wesh reports.
"Carlos did not deserve to die," Chitwood said. An incident of road rage in which a man does what he is supposed to do: notify the police, cooperate with the system and his gratitude is to end up with multiple bullets in his head, killed just outside your house & # 39;
Meanwhile, the family of Cruz-Echevarria, a small business owner and brother-in-law of an employee of the Volusia County Sheriff's Office, is still reconciling with the loss of the "soft animal lover."
His niece described him as someone who made life "much richer and more beautiful just for being himself".