Homicide Suspect Arrested in Chula Vista on the US-Mexico Border

A man suspected of fatally shooting another man last Friday inside a Chula Vista home was arrested Wednesday in Otay Mesa as he was crossing back into the country from Mexico, police said.

Martín Ralph Morales, 48, is suspected of shooting and killing Alberto Marquez, 54, last Friday afternoon inside a house on Agua Tibia Avenue near East L Street, according to the police lieutenant of Chula Vista, Dan Peak.

On Wednesday, Morales attempted to cross from Mexico into the United States through the Otay Mesa port of entry, according to Peak. US Customs and Border Protection agents detained him at the crossing until Chula Vista detectives arrived and arrested him as a murder suspect.

Jail records showed Morales was being held without bond Wednesday afternoon at the Chula Vista city jail.

According to police, Morales and Márquez were two of several people who were at the home Friday afternoon when an argument broke out. During the discussion, Morales allegedly shot Márquez.

Police officers and paramedics tried to save Marquez before he was taken to a hospital, where he died, Peak said.

The suspect and the victim are believed to have known each other prior to the shooting, according to Peak, although police did not describe their exact relationship. During the investigation, detectives identified Morales as the alleged perpetrator of the shooting and determined that he had fled the home after the shooting in a dark sedan.

Peak did not reveal how investigators determined Morales was the suspect or whether they knew he was in Mexico prior to his attempt to cross Wednesday.

Anyone with additional information about the murder can call the San Diego County Crime Stoppers anonymous line at (888) 580-8477.