U.S. Marshals Discuss Tracking Colusa Murder Suspect

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SACRAMENTO -- After a year and a half on the run, authorities were able to capture a man suspected of killing the mother of his child in Mexico.

Salvador Garcia Baca is accused of killing Colusa woman Karen Garcia in January 2018 and leaving her body in her car in a Woodland parking lot.

"There was four individuals from the marshals that were working this case full time," Deputy Ryan Burrows, of the U.S. Marshal's Office, told FOX40.

Burrows and Special Deputy Gil Tournour got involved in the search for Garcia Baca within hours after he was named a suspect.

"We just really start digging into this person's life, to see who they are, who they associate with," Burrows said.

Mug shot of Salvador Garcia. Courtesy of Colusa County Sheriff's Department

When Karen went missing, she was believed to have been grieving alone after her sister was killed in a wrong-way crash just days earlier.

After her body was found in Woodland, police in Colusa found blood evidence in the apartment she shared with Garcia Baca.

He was already gone.

"He had family all over the place, so he had family in southern California, he had family in Nebraska and other parts of the state," Burrows said. "So we spread out."

Some of his family was in Mexico.

Soon, it became clear that Garcia had left the U.S. after his van was found in Tijuana.

"We have people there and they are already liaisons with those governments," Tournour said.

The marshals spent long days tracking down leads, interviewing Garcia's family and friends and vetting tips from the public.

"There was not one point in the investigation that we ever stopped. It was continuous and it’s daunting, it’s exhausting," Burrows said. "You're sacrificing time with your family and friends, but it’s worth it because we want to bring justice for the victim’s family and for the daughter."

The marshal's office couldn't give too many details on what tactics they used, but they admit there were difficulties with capturing Garcia Baca.

"He got lucky a couple of times," Tournour said. "We were close a couple of times and he got lucky."

But Garcia Baca's luck eventually ran out. He was captured in Guadalajara and brought back to the U.S.

Tournour personally drove down and took custody of him at LAX, and drove him back in a convoy to the Colusa County jail.

"He still committed a heinous crime, that doesn't fix that," Tournour said. "But you’re happy that he’s going to be held accountable."


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