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Suspect In 2002 Fatal Stabbing Of Salinas Woman Extradited To U.S.

SALINAS (BCN) – A 46-year-old man who had been sought for allegedly killing his ex-girlfriend in Salinas in 2002 was arrested in Mexico and was extradited to the U.S. this week, police said Thursday.

Juan Gabriel Nunez is accused of fatally stabbing Loretta Paluszynski, who was reported missing on Aug. 8, 2002, after a babysitter said she had not shown up to drop off her children as she normally would, according to Salinas police.

Officers went to her home and found Paluszynski dead from multiple stab wounds. Her two young children were found safe.

Investigators said there was a long history of domestic abuse involving the couple and an arrest warrant was issued for Nunez. A vehicle was recovered in Southern California and authorities believed he had fled to Mexico following the killing, police said.

Salinas Cold Case Murder Arrest
Juan Gabriel Nunez, suspect in the 2002 murder of Loretta Paluszynski, being taken into custody after being extradited to the United States on September 8, 2021. (Salinas Police Department)

In April, authorities in Mexico arrested Nunez and he was extradited to the U.S. on Wednesday to be placed into Monterey County Jail.

Salinas police thanked the Monterey County District Attorney's Office, a U.S. Marshals Service task force, the state Department of Justice and authorities in Mexico for helping in the case.

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