Pasadena police are searching for 20-year-old Juan Carlos Mata, who is accused of shooting and killing his 19-year-old ex-girlfriend in the parking lot of the Oakwood Village Apartments on Pasadena Boulevard. The incident occurred shortly before midnight, and investigators believe that Mata may still have the gun he used to commit the crime.
According to family members, Mata had been trying to contact his ex-girlfriend, Reyes, even after she broke up with him a month ago. While there were no instances of domestic violence between the two, Mata reportedly did not accept the breakup and would text and show up at her apartment complex.
Reyes’ parents also live at the complex and heard the shots from the parking lot. Her mother called her daughter to warn her about being careful, unaware that it was her own daughter who had just been shot and killed. Mata picked up Reyes’ phone, spoke to her mother, crying, repeatedly saying he was sorry, and then fled the scene.
Neighbors who saw Mata from time to time described him as friendly and even recalled him buying ice cream for a neighbor’s daughter. However, investigators warn that Mata should not be approached if seen.
Neighbors saw Mata from time to time and said they thought he was friendly. Junior Salazar, who woke up to the sound of four shots fired right outside his apartment, said the suspect had recently bought his daughter ice cream. He expressed shock and confusion over the incident because of his past positive experiences with the wanted suspect.
The police are urging anyone with information about Mata’s whereabouts to contact them immediately. Reyes’ family is devastated by the loss of their daughter, and the community is in shock over the senseless act of violence.