Police: Suspect in disappearance of roommate commits suicide in Denver federal courthouse cell

Police: Suspect admitted role in roommate's death

DENVER - A man who committed suicide Sunday in a cell at the Denver federal courthouse was a fugitive who had just confessed to his involvement in the disappearance and death of his roommate in Macomb, Il., according to Illinois police.

The Macomb Police Department said in a news release Monday that deputy U.S. marshals had arrested 45-year-old Jose Bustos-Bravo in Aurora earlier Sunday.

When deputy marshals asked Bustos-Bravo the whereabouts of his roommate, 65-year-old Juan A. Bustamante, the suspected "admitted to authorities in Colorado to his involvement in the disappearance of Bustamante," Macomb police said.

"Bustos-Bravo indicated that Bustamante is deceased and revealed the possible location of Bustamante's body [in Illinois]," police said. "Unfortunately, after providing information to investigators, Bustos-Bravo took his own life" in the Denver courthouse cell, Macomb police said.

Macomb police said they are now focusing their search for Bustamante's body on areas that Bustos-Bravo described during "his confession."

Both Bustamante and Bustos-Bravo were pipeline workers.

The investigation began Thursday night when Macomb police were called by a third roommate who said he'd found blood and signs of a disturbance in the trio's Macomb home and his roommates, Juan A. Bustamante, 65, and "Francisco Villa," were missing. Police said federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents soon determined that "Francisco Villa" was in fact Jose Bustos-Bravo.

Both Bustamante's and Bustos-Bravo's vehicles and other belongings were missing from the residence.  Bustamante's vehicle was later found abandoned in the parking lot of a Macomb Walmart. But police said they couldn't find Bustos-Bravo's 2001 Volkswagen Passat, which had Wyoming license plates.

A nationwide search ended with Bustos-Bravo's arrest by U.S. marshals in Aurora Sunday.

Chief Deputy U.S. Marshal Ken Deal said he could not immediately release the name of the man who committed suicide in the courthouse holding cell. Deal said the man was arrested by members of the marshals' Violent Offender Task Force.

Deal said the man had been questioned by deputy marshals and then placed alone in a holding cell, awaiting transfer to the Denver Downtown Detention Center. He was later found dead in the cell.

A death investigation is being conducted by the FBI with assistance from the Denver Police Department and cooperation from the U.S. Marshals Service, Deal said.

The Denver Office of the Medical Examiner is conducting an autopsy on Bustos-Bravo on Monday.

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