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Houston police eye nephew as person of interest in family’s disappearance after Los Angeles arrest

September 25, 2018

The nephew of missing siblings Dina and Rogelio Escobar has been identified as a person of interest in their disappearance after his arrest in the fatal beating of two homeless men in Los Angeles, according to police.

A Houston police spokesperson acknowledged a possible link to 47-year-old Ramon Escobar and a missing persons case involving his aunt and uncle, both of whom vanished in August.

“Our investigators want to speak with him,” a Houston police official tweeted.

Ramon Escobar’s uncle, Rogelio, 65, went missing on Aug. 26, while his aunt, Dina, 60, disappeared two days later when she went looking for him at his Houston home. Her burned out van was found near a Galveston beach.

It was not immediately known how long Ramon Escobar has been in California, but his presence 1,500 miles to the west was a surprise to his cousin, Ligia Salamanca.

“We wouldn’t know why he would be out there,” Salamanca said in Houston.

On Monday, police in Santa Monica arrested Escobar for assault. He was identified as the suspect in the brutal slaying of two homeless men with a baseball bat in Los Angeles on Sept. 16, according to Los Angeles Police Department investigators.

A third man survived the assault but was critically wounded. All three victims were sleeping when Escobar allegedly attacked them, police said.

Santa Monica police Lt. Saul Rodriguez said the bat attack was similar to four previous beatings of homeless men in the beach city.

Los Angeles police are slated to release more details in the attack Tuesday afternoon.

nicole.hensley@chron.com

@nkhensley

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