While sitting in federal custody awaiting deportation to Mexico, Gregorio Luna Luna allegedly wrote letters to the mother of his child saying he would return and make good on earlier threats to kill her.
The 31-year-old man was sent back to his native country May 1, but he recrossed the border sometime in the next 22 days.
He stole a 1997 Mazda Protege from a Snohomish friend May 23, drove to the Tri-Cities, confronted Griselda Ocampo Meza that night at a Kennewick restaurant and broke into her Pasco apartment hours later, according to search warrants released Thursday.
Ocampo Meza reportedly had changed the locks since Luna moved out earlier this year, but he took a key from her roommates as they left for work before 4 a.m., court documents said.
She fought with Luna long enough for her 5-year-old son to be rushed out of the home before she was stabbed once in the chest with a kitchen knife, documents said.
Ocampo Meza, 21, died before she could get to a hospital.
On Thursday, Luna pleaded innocent in Franklin County Superior Court to first-degree murder. His trial is set for Aug. 4.
Prosecutor Steve Lowe told the court there was no need for the search warrants to remain sealed, and Judge Robert Swisher agreed and unsealed them.
The warrants detail what happened in the hours after the crime as Pasco police collected evidence at the scene, interviewed witnesses and tracked down Luna.
Ocampo Meza reportedly had ended a seven-year relationship with Luna in January. They had a son together.
She filed her first of two requests for a protection order in February after a series of alleged assaults by him. The first request, filed in Franklin County Superior Court, was denied when she didn't show up for the court hearing, but she filed again Feb. 18.
"He threaten(ed) me that he is going to come back and kill or make my life miserable," Ocampo Meza wrote. "I fear that he will kill. He has tried 2 times before. I fear for my life and son."
A two-year order was granted March 1 telling Luna to stay away from Ocampo Meza and his son and to not commit any "acts of abuse" on them.
Luna was sitting in the Franklin County jail at the time after a Jan. 30 arrest on suspicion of domestic violence and malicious harassment. After posting $750 bail on the misdemeanor offenses, he was handed over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement on March 16.
Luna then was held in the Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma until April 29, when an immigration judge ordered him removed from the United States. In that time, he allegedly sent letters to another person to deliver to Ocampo Meza.
The search warrants said when officers were checking Luna's history, they found an April 30 report "in reference to some threatening letters he wrote to her while on the ICE hold stating he was going to finish the job."
Detectives later learned Luna was visiting friends at their Snohomish home May 23. He had a key to their Mazda "but took it without permission," court documents said. That night at 10 p.m. he called his friend and "apologized to him for stealing his vehicle."
Reports also say there was an altercation at a restaurant that night when Luna contacted Ocampa Meza. He took off in the Mazda and Kennewick police were unable to locate him.
Just before 4 a.m. May 24, Ocampa Meza's two male roommates were leaving to go to work when Luna approached them in the parking lot of their North 22nd Avenue complex
"He threatened them and got the key to Ocampo Meza's apartment," documents said. "They watched him enter her apartment."
Luna fought with his former girlfriend and her new boyfriend, Jairo Flores-Flores. At some point, Flores-Flores grabbed the young boy and ran to a nearby apartment, where he started knocking on the door, the search warrants say.
"Luna Luna came out of the apartment a little later and went after Flores-Flores while he was knocking" at the other apartment's door, the warrants said. "When he did this, the two of them started fighting."
The resident of the other apartment eventually answered his door and broke up the fight, but not before Flores-Flores reportedly punched Luna in the nose and mouth to the point he was bleeding from the nose.
Luna "jumped up off the ground," ran through the parking lot and jumped a fence, where it is believed he then took off in the Mazda, according to the court documents.
Detective Scott Warren wrote in one warrant that he did "see quite a bit of blood" in front of the apartment. The blood reportedly trailed through the parking lot in the direction Luna ran.
Warren also said there appeared to be dried blood in the Mazda, which was seized after it was found parked in front of Luna's brother's apartment on North Fourth Avenue.
Erik Luna Luna, who was called out of his apartment as officers surrounded it around 6:30 a.m. that morning, said he didn't know how the Mazda got there. Gregorio Luna wasn't in that apartment, but was arrested 11 hours after the stabbing at a vacant east Pasco home.
On Thursday, Lowe asked the court to order a DNA test on Luna so investigators can compare that swab to potential DNA evidence at the scene.
Defense attorneys Karla Kane and Shawn Sant objected to investigators swabbing the mouth of their client.
Lowe called Warren to the stand. He testified that he took samples of what appeared to be blood from two separate apartments.
Warren said he was told Luna was in a fight with a witness, had been injured and was bleeding as a result.
Asked if it would be helpful for the Washington State Patrol Crime Lab to have Luna's DNA to compare to the blood taken from the crime scene, Warren responded: "Yes, it would."
Swisher signed the order, noting the defense's continued objection to the DNA request.
-- Kristin M. Kraemer: 582-1531; firstname.lastname@example.org