TRAVIS COUNTY, Texas (KXAN) — The body of Camerina Trujillo Perez, who investigators believe was murdered by her boyfriend, was found in her car in a Pflugerville parking lot Sunday evening, according to law enforcement. The man wanted in her death, Luis Angel Montes, 35, hasn’t been caught yet.
The Travis County Sheriff’s Office said deputies responded to help Pflugerville Police at a commercial parking lot located in the 12300 block of North State Highway 130 northbound service road.
Authorities had been searching for Perez’s car, a 2014 blue Chevy Sonic, since Jan. 25, and it was found at that location with a woman’s body inside, TCSO said. It appeared she had been dead for a few weeks, the sheriff’s office said in a release.
An autopsy was done Tuesday, and the body was positively identified as Perez, TCSO said. Officials are still waiting on the final cause and manner of death.
Now, deputies are working to figure out how long Perez’s car was in the parking lot and how it got there. They are also still looking for Montes.
Perez and Montes were first reported missing by family Jan. 25. TCSO said detectives learned they had been in a relationship and were last seen together the day before.
Authorities believed Perez could be in danger, as it was reported Montes had threatened Perez in the past. That’s when a CLEAR Alert was issued Jan. 26. That CLEAR Alert was discontinued three days later, but TCSO said detectives were still investigating.
TCSO said as detectives looked into the couple’s disappearance further, they found evidence that pointed to Montes murdering Perez in the early morning hours of Jan. 25 — the day they were reported missing.
An arrest affidavit obtained by KXAN Feb. 11 said Perez and Montes met up at a bank parking lot in Pflugerville, and Montes reportedly assaulted Perez, causing her death. The affidavit said a significant amount of blood was seen pooling between two cars on the bank’s surveillance footage.
The arrest affidavit said Montes then drove Perez’s car away from the scene, with her body still inside. Investigators believe he was going to dispose of the evidence or conceal her murder, according to court documents.
A murder warrant was issued for Montes Feb. 4. Officials are still looking for him more than a week later, and his bail is set at $1 million.
Anyone with information about where Montes could be should call the Travis County Sheriff’s Office tip line at (512) 854-1444 or Crime Stoppers at (512) 472-8477.
Spotting domestic abuse
The Texas Advocacy Project said control is one identifier in an abusive relationship.
“Unfortunately all domestic abuse is based on power and control, and that is where you are going to see the most red flags,” said Texas Advocacy Project CEO Heather Bellino “If someone is starting to isolate you from your friends and your family that is a warning sign.”
Bellino said there is help for survivors of domestic abuse.
“Share those hotline numbers, share the information far and wide, because it is one in three Texans, domestic abuse is happening at a prolific rate, and we have to do everything we can to stop it.”
For help, you can call (800) 374-HOPE or visit the Texas Advocacy Project website.