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Florida murder suspect arrested in Neck
Westmoreland deputy arrests suspect in Florida slaying

Date published: 5/5/2009

BY FRANK DELANO

A suspect in a Florida slaying has been arrested in Westmoreland County.

County deputies and two detectives from Highland County, Fla., arrested Javier Zamorano-Valdez, 22, at a Montross convenience store Thursday, said Westmoreland Sheriff's Maj. John Hoover.

Zamorano-Valdez is charged with killing Jose A. Cabrera-Cirino, 48, whose body was found April 20 in Lake Placid, Fla. Police issued a national alert for the victim's missing vehicle, a red 1996 Mazda Protege.

Westmoreland Deputy Rafael R. Torres thought he had seen the car, said Hoover. Torres, a native of Puerto Rico and fluent in Spanish, found it in Leedstown April 25 and was able to identify the driver as Zamorano-Valdez, Hoover said.

"I give all the credit to Deputy Torres and the Florida police. They did a great job of working together. Without that cooperation, the suspect would still be loose somewhere here in Westmoreland County," said Westmoreland Sheriff C.O. Balderson.

In addition to Florida charges of second-degree murder and auto theft, Zamorano-Valdez is charged in Westmoreland with auto larceny, obstruction of justice, being a fugitive from justice and making a false statement to police. He remains jailed without bond at the Northern Neck Regional Jail in Warsaw.

Hoover said Zamorano-Valdez may be an illegal immigrant who previously worked in Westmoreland County. He may also have been charged with previous local crimes under a variety of aliases, Hoover said.

Frank Delano: 804/761-4300
Email: fpdelano@gmail.com