Individual Arrested and Charged with Carjacking/Murder
|FBI San Juan June 21, 2011|
SAN JUAN—On June 20, 2011, CARMELO VELAZQUEZ-APONTE, age 33, was arrested and is being charged today with the carjacking and murder of RICHARDSON MIESES-PIMENTEL, which occurred on Saturday evening June 18, 2011. VELAZQUEZ-APONTE is also charged with carrying and using a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence.
The criminal complaint alleges after purchasing some groceries at a gas station in Carolina, Puerto Rico, and while getting ready to place gas in his vehicle, the victim was approached by VELAZQUEZ-APONTE. Shortly thereafter a struggle ensued between VELAZQUEZ-APONTE and the victim, and VELAZQUEZ-APONTE allegedly shot RICHARDSON MIESES-PIMENTEL twice with a handgun. VELAZQUEZ-APONTE then took the victim’s vehicle, described as a 2002 black Ford Sport-Trac pickup truck. MIESES-PIMENTEL died as a result of the injuries sustained in the robbery and carjacking.
The aforementioned robbery/carjacking was subsequently recorded by the security cameras located at the gas station. On June 20, 2011, the video from the gas station security cameras were being reviewed by police officers with the Police of Puerto Rico (POPR), and during this review, one of the POPR officers recognized the individual who is believed to have committed this robbery and carjacking as CARMELO VELAZQUEZ-APONTE, also known as (aka) “Boty.”
During another unrelated incident on June 20, 2011, CARMELO VELAZQUEZ-APONTE, aka “Boty” was arrested by the POPR and the Carolina Municipal Police Department. During this incident a POPR officer was injured as a result of a shoot-out which occurred with VELAZQUEZ-APONTE. At the time of his arrest for this unrelated incident, VELAZQUEZ-APONTE was in possession of two (2) handguns. One handgun was a .40 caliber Smith & Wesson Model 410 which was registered to the victim of the robbery/carjacking of June 18, 2011 RICHARDSON MIESES-PIMENTEL, and the other weapon was a 9mm Smith & Wesson Model 5906 which is assigned to the POPR officer injured in the shoot-out with VELAZQUEZ-APONTE on June 20, 2011.
If convicted, the VELAZQUEZ-APONTE faces a maximum penalty of life imprisonment or the death penalty.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Justin Martin.
The public is reminded a criminal complaint contains only charges and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty. The U.S. government has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.