Lee deputies arrested a Naples man as the sixth suspect in the August double homicide of a pair of alleged drug dealers in Bonita Springs.
Robert Patrick Downey Jr., 30, of the 16000 block of Arbor View Blvd., is charged with accessory after the fact to second-degree murder. He was booked into the Lee County Jail at 6:30 p.m. on Monday.
The bodies of Daniel Leonor, 24, and Israel Ponce, 20, were discovered in Leonor’s burning Jeep on a dirt road in rural Lee County, just east of Bonita Springs, on Aug. 1. Detectives say the two men were attacked as they tried to sell cocaine at a Bonita Springs home.
Five other suspects, all from the south Lee County area, have been arrested in connection to the homicides. Two men, Dustin McIntyre, 21, and Lisandro Resendiz, 21, have been formally charged by prosecutors. Both face two counts of second-degree murder and a count of second-degree arson.
Colton Lance, 20, awaits formal charges, as does juvenile Angel Salinas, 17, and a man arrested yesterday, Angel Heredia, 23.
Heredia and Downey were both arrested on warrants for accessory after the fact, meaning they aren’t believed to have participated in the homicides but helped assist the alleged killers.
In an affidavit for the warrant, Lee County homicide detective Jeff Brown recounted Downey’s statement to investigators. Known as “Bobby,” Downey said he was at the house to buy $50 of cocaine when Leonor, also called “Miami,” and Ponce arrived.
He and Heredia, known as “Camel,” were told to go to a back room when Leonor entered the room, Downey told detectives. They soon heard a “ruckus” and returned to find a melee around Leonor. McIntyre, known as “Butch,” Resendiz and Lance surrounded the alleged dealer, kicking and beating him.
“Butch, I’ll give you anything,” Leonor told McIntyre, according to Downey. “I’ll take you to my house. I’ll give you everything...”
“...This is 239... you’re in our country...” McIntyre responded.
The three attackers then called out to Ponce, waiting inside Leonor’s Jeep, and asked him to come into the house, Downey said. They then jumped and beat him.
The attackers then placed plastic bags over the victims’ heads, suffocating them to death, Downey said.
The suspect told detectives the bodies were placed in Leonor’s Jeep. He said Salinas, called “Thug,” followed the men to the rural Lee County road in a borrowed Jeep. Meanwhile, Lance, Heredia and Downey cleaned the home of blood.
They stashed the Jeep, borrowed from a man named Mike Keller, at a home in Immokalee.
Deputies had sought the black Jeep from day one, told by a witness that the vehicle was seen leaving the area.
McIntyre and Resendiz are documented members of a gang called Vatos Locos.
Downey was arrested in March 2000 for attempted robbery and purse snatching. He pleaded to the charges and was sentenced to 3 years state probation. After violating probation, he served 8 months in the Lee County Jail.
Downey’s newest charge, accessory after the fact to a second-degree murder, is punishable by a maximum 15 years in prison and a $10,000 fine. The suspect remains in custody.
A spokesman for the Lee County Sheriff’s Office said the investigation into the homicides is ongoing.