TACOMA, Wash. -- The Federal Bureau of Investigation is offering a $100,000 reward for information leading to the capture of a double murder suspect and gang member who has been on the run since the 2010 killings in Tacoma.
Santiago Villalba Mederos, 26, was added this week to the FBI's Ten Most Wanted Fugitives list.
The FBI says Mederos is wanted related to shootings that resulted in the death of a woman and the wounding of her brother, and a month later, the murder of a man.
The News-Tribune reports that on the night of the first slaying, Feb. 7, 2010, Mederos and other members of his gang had stolen a van and were searching for members of a rival gang to target in retaliation for a shooting two days earlier.
The victim, Camille Love, was an aspiring veterinary technician who was targeted because she and her brother were riding in a red car and her brother was wearing a red coat, the color of the rival gang, the paper reports. Her brother was shot and wounded.
In the second slaying, on March 25, 2010, 25-year-old Saul Lucas-Alfonso was killed. The paper reports Mederos was part of a group that ransacked a car in a South Tacoma alley because they believed the owner of the vehicle owed their gang money.
Three men confronted the group and a fight broke out, during which Mederos allegedly opened fire, killing Lucas-Alfonso.
None of the victims had gang ties, the FBI said.
"The victims who lost their lives in 2010 were simply in the wrong place at the wrong time," FBI Special Agent in Charge Jay Tabb, Jr. said Monday at a press conference at Tacoma police headquarters, the paper reports. "Despite having no connection to street gangs they were senselessly targeted by Mederos."
The FBI says it's believed that Mederos fled to Mexico after the murders but he may have returned to the U.S.
"We believe there are a lot of people that have information on his whereabouts," Steve Reopelle, a Tacoma Police Department homicide detective who investigated both murders, said in a statement posted on the FBI website. "The reward will be a great incentive for someone to come forward. Mederos has been on the run for a long time. We need the public's help to apprehend him."
Mederos is approximately 5 foot 10 inches tall and weighs 140 pounds. He has black hair, brown eyes, and tattoos of the letter "S'' on his left shoulder and the letter "E'' on his right shoulder.
Anyone with information about his whereabouts is asked to contact their local FBI office or the nearest American embassy or consulate.