ARLINGTON, Texas — Editor's note: The video previously aired when APD was searching for Castaneda.
The Arlington Police Department (APD) says a person of interest wanted in connection to the murder of a 44-year-old woman who was found dead in a parking lot in late October has been taken into custody Thursday.
During a press conference Wednesday morning, APD announced 44-year-old Jose Luis Moreno Castaneda was wanted for questioning in the murder of Evila Yanes.
Around 4:10 a.m. Sunday, Oct. 30, officers were called to the 400 block of N. Cooper Street after a passerby reported seeing a woman lying unresponsive next to a vehicle in a parking lot.
When emergency crews arrived, they found Yanes face down and bleeding from her head. Officials said she was pronounced dead at the scene.
Following an autopsy, the Tarrant County Medical Examiner’s Officer determined Yanes died from blunt force trauma to the head and ruled her death a homicide.
In the weeks since, APD said the homicide unit worked diligently to identify Castaneda, determining he had been in a lengthy dating relationship with Yanes.
Police said surveillance video captured Castaneda and Yanes together at a local grocery store on Saturday, Oct. 29 – just hours before Yanes’ body was found.
Castaneda is the last person to see Yanes alive, police said.
“We have not found anyone who has seen or heard from him since her murder,” said Kyle Dishko in Wednesday's news conference. He oversees the Arlington Police Department Central Investigations Unit.
“This behavior is suspicious and very concerning to the Arlington Police Department. We believe Mr. Castaneda is in the DFW metroplex or he may have returned to Mexico,” said Dishko.
Dishko said Castaneda has been on probation for assault family violence against Yanes, in which he threw gasoline on her and physically assaulted her in March of 2021. Castaneda was arrested and APD filed charges against him with the Tarrant County District Attorney’s Office.
Police said because Castaneda failed to communicate with his probation officer concerning his current location, a violation of probation warrant was issued for his arrest.
APD said a tip led them to Lewisville on Thursday morning, where members of the U.S. Marshals North Texas Fugitive Task located Castaneda and took him into custody on the violation of probation warrant that had been issued for his arrest.
Castaneda has been booked into the Arlington City jail. APD said he is refusing to speak with detectives regarding the death of Yanes.
The investigation into Yanes' death is ongoing. The department said no charges have been filed in connection to the case.
APD is asking for anyone with information concerning Yanes' death to contact Detective Krystallyne Robinson at 817-459-5935 or Crime Stoppers at 817-469-8477.
Yanes' family asked APD to share the following statement about their loved one:
"Evila Yanes was a kind and good mother who was taken far too soon. She did everything for her children. She has two grandkids who continue to ask about her. The days since her death have been very hard for us and will only get more difficult with the holidays approaching.
We need justice. Please, if you have information, call Arlington Police."