Men Accused In Stabbing Death of Engineer Face Judge

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – One of the men accused of stabbing and killing a nuclear engineer in southwest Miami-Dade is reportedly connected to a stabbing abroad.

Police in London, Ontario in Canada say 22-year-old Alejandro Tapia has been wanted since May, 2016 for stabbing a man several times and wounding him in a bathroom.

London Police Constable Sandasha Bough told CBS4’s Peter D’Oench, “As a result of the investigation Alejandro Tapia, who was 21 at the time, was charged with aggravated assault and extortion and a weapon dangerous to the public peace. He and the victim were known to each other and this was not a random act but rather an escalation of a dispute between these two individuals.”

Bough added, “He is wanted for some very serious code Canada charges.”

She could not say if Tapia was wanted in Canada for other crimes.

“We can say this investigation remains open and we look to leads received from the public,” said Bough. “We placed him on our Wanted Wednesday page and shared important information about him through social media.”

In total, four men have been arrested in connection Alexander Restrepo’s death; Alejandro Esteban Tapia, 24-Year-old Edwin Rios, 24-Year-old Andres Feo and 20-year-old Sebastian Zorilla.

stabbing suspects Men Accused In Stabbing Death of Engineer Face Judge

Edwin Rios, 24 (T-L); Alejandro Tapia, 22 (T-R); Sebastian Zorrilla (B-L); Andres Feo (B-R). (Source: Miami-Dade Corrections)

On Monday, three of the men – Tapia, Feo, and Zorilla – went before Judge Mindy Glazer who found there was probable cause to charge them with attempted second-degree murder and second-degree murder. Rios has already been charged with second-degree murder.

Reading from the arrest report, Judge Glazer said, “One of the males produced a cutting instrument and stabbed the victim multiple times in the back…the physical assault was captured on surveillance tape.”  The report said the victims were invited to the Halloween party at the home and left. It also said before he was stabbed, Restrepo was involved in a fist fight with those who attacked him.

Tapia did not have an attorney to represent him in court but an assistant public defender said “there’s a possibility of a self-defense claim.”

An attorney for Feo and Zorilla said he plans to fight the charges.

“Really we have no other comment to make other than the fact that we look forward to our day in court and prove our clients’ innocence,” said attorney Dylan Gonzalez.

Peter Heller, an attorney for Edwin Rios, also said he did not think there was probable cause for the charges against his client.

“This is a tragic situation with this person passed away. I just know that my client did not stab anybody. He did not have a knife,” he said.

During the course of the investigation, it was discovered that Tapia is also wanted for a 2016 stabbing Canada.

Investigators said Alexander and his brother Chris were at a Halloween party on October 21st when they were jumped by a group of men.

Alexander, an employee at the Turkey Point Nuclear Generating Station, was stabbed multiple times and died of his wounds. Chris suffered injuries to his head and hand but survived.

All four men believed to be connected to the crime are being held at the Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Center.  Their exact role in Restrepo’s death is unclear at this time.

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