On Monday, July 20, 2020, at 12:24 AM, SAPD Officers responded to reports of a man down in a vehicle in the 500 block of South Flower Street. Upon arrival, officers located an unidentified adult male slumped behind the wheel of a vehicle in the middle of the street.
On the afternoon of July 20, 2020, the Orange County Coroner Division confirmed the decedent as Carlos Sanchez Benitez (40) of Santa Ana.
Santa Ana PD Homicide Detectives identified Juan Yepez Martinez (31), also a resident of Santa Ana, as a potential suspect.
Detectives arrested Martinez on a want stemming from an unrelated case. During interrogation, Martinez confessed to murdering Benitez due to an ongoing personal conflict.
Detectives authored a search warrant, which they executed at two different residences in Santa Ana. Detectives recovered a rifle believed to be the murder weapon at one location and other items of evidentiary value from Martinez’s residence near the crime scene.
With concurrence from the Orange County District Attorney’s Office, Detectives charged Juan Yepez Martinez with one count of Murder, and booked him at the Santa Ana Detention Facility.
Detectives encourage anyone with information regarding this incident to come forward and provide a statement.