An Upper Leacock Township man is wanted after officials say he killed two men Monday and then placed their bodies in a pickup truck which he then set on fire.
Ezequiel B. Almodovar, 36, was charged Wednesday afternoon with two counts of homicide, the Lancaster County District Attorney's Office said. He remains wanted, and police said he is believed to be armed and dangerous.
Two bodies were found in a burned vehicle in Manor Township Tuesday, officials said. The decedents are believed by police to be Jonathan Rivera and Eugenio Morales-Torres, though the Lancaster County Coroner's Officer is working to confirm the identities.
Police determined that Rivera and Morales-Torres were shot on Monday evening at Almodovar's house in the 1500 block of Hunsecker Road.
Both men were then loaded into Morales-Torres' truck and then driven to a farm lane on Charlestown Road, where the vehicle was set on fire.
A woman who was a relative and acquaintance of the dead men contacted police Monday night to report them missing, the district attorney's office said. The men had gone to visit Almodovar Monday, police said they were told.
Tuesday morning, East Lampeter Township police went to Almodovar's house and gathered evidence outside the home and later searched the residence.
The vehicle fire was reported at 6:40 a.m., Lancaster County-Wide Communications said, and the two bodies were found in the bed of the truck.
A Pennsylvania State Police Fire Marshal determined the fire to be arson.
Almodovar is also charged with arson, tampering with evidence and two counts of abuse of a corpse.
Police are investigating whether anyone else was involved in these acts, the district attorney's office said.
“This is a comprehensive investigation involving multiple crime scenes and numerous locations of interest in Lancaster County,” District Attorney Heather Adams said Wednesday. “The collaboration between law-enforcement agencies once again was outstanding and aided in the identification of Almodovar as being involved in the deaths of these two men.”
The district attorney's office said early Thursday afternoon it didn't have any updates to share in the case and that there were "no immediate plans" to discuss a motive.
East Lampeter Township police, Manor Township police, Pennsylvania State Police, the Lancaster County District Attorney's Office and the Lancaster County Coroner's Office are all working to investigate the homicides.
Anyone with information is asked to call East Lampeter Township police at 717-291-4676, or submit a tip online via CrimeWatch.
Almodovar pleaded guilty to a felony gun crime and two misdemeanors after he threatened several people with a gun and fled from police in 2011, LNP | LancasterOnline reported. As he fled from police, Almodovar drew his weapon and turned toward an officer, prompting the officer to fire at him. The officer missed, and Almodovar was caught after being hit with a stun gun.
He was sentenced to 2 1/2 to 5 years, according to court records.
Almodovar was also charged with manufacture, delivery or possession with intent to manufacture or deliver in 2017, again pleaded guilty and sentenced to a maximum of four years.
A search on the Pennsylvania Board of Probation and Parole indicates he was released on Nov. 21, 2019.