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North Carolina fugitive captured in Mexico after 10 years

Posted November 12, 2015
Updated November 13, 2015

Claudio Gutierrez-Cruz
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— A North Carolina man who was accused of killing a man at Fort Bragg in 2005 was extradited to North Carolina on Thursday after his arrest in Mexico.

Claudio Gutierrez-Cruz, 48, was arrested in Hidalgo, Mexico, on April 23 and was detained in Mexico City until he was taken into custody by the Charlotte Division of the FBI on Thursday.

Gutierrez-Cruz was wanted in connection with the death of Francisco Lopez-Bautista, 44, at Fort Bragg in June 2005.

According to Gutierrez-Cruz’s wife, who spoke to WRAL News in 2005, her husband spotted some men trying to steal pine straw on Fort Bragg that he had the right to rake and sell. According to his family, he fired two shots into the air, and the bullets struck Lopez-Bautista when they came down.

Gutierrez-Cruz was charged with murder and was being held at the Durham County Detention Center on Thursday afternoon.


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  • akakatiemain Nov 13, 2015

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    They do sell contracts for the pine straw.

  • Nan Toppin Nov 13, 2015
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    I know I am getting caught up in a detail of the story but does anyone really believe the US government gave this guy the right to rake and sell pine straw on government property (Ft. Bragg) ....

  • Hari Nootsak Nov 13, 2015
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    I guess it was the last straw...
    Firing in air and "falling" on victim, that's a hoot!

  • Mike Smith Nov 13, 2015
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    He fired in the air all right directly at the person

  • Royce Dunnivan Nov 13, 2015
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    pretty good aim

  • SusanandAaron Tambot-Blankenship Nov 12, 2015
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    I'm calling bs on the firing the shots in the air, he may have fired them and hit the guy on the way over but both fired up and falling on him is ridiculous.