Ernesto Alonso has been named as the primary suspect in the double murder of an elderly couple in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Alonso, who was the couple’s handyman, was arrested in Florida. He is being accused of kidnapping and strangling the elderly couple in the home, and some suspect that it may have been a robbery. Ernesto was arrested in Hollywood, Florida, yesterday, Wednesday morning, and will face extradition since the murders took place in Louisiana.
It is believed that Ernesto Alonso killed the couple over money, as police have recovered tens of thousands of dollars, according to police spokesman L’Jean McKneely. It is believed that the money came from the couple’s savings. The victims have been identified as Dennis and Suzanne Duplantier, 71 and 70.
According to a new CBS Crime Insider report, Ernesto Alonso is facing charges for both murder and kidnapping. It is believed that he removed them from the home and then killed them. Their car was tracked using OnStar and was found near interstate 12 in Hammond. Their bodies were found inside the vehicle. It was family members who called police on Monday because they were unable to get a hold of the couple.
— WAFB (@WAFB) October 21, 2015
Details are still scarce, but police believe that the victims were likely bound and beaten inside the home until they granted Ernesto Alonso access to a safe containing money. It is then believed Ernesto took the money, got the couple inside their car, and then killed them. In the arrest warrant that police issued, it is revealed that blood was found in multiple rooms in the home, which is consistent with a struggle. The report also reveals that police have surveillance video that shows a consistent story with Ernesto Alonso being the killer. In the video, police see the couple’s pickup being parked at the gas station where it was found. They then see a suspect, believed to be Ernesto Alonso, get out of the car and into another vehicle that had an accomplice inside. No word on who this other person is, but police would like to know who Ernesto was working with.
Alonso had been working for the couple to do odd jobs around the home and the property. He is being extradited to Baton Rouge, where he will face first-degree murder charges. But the case is far from closed. Even though the motive is suspected to be robbery, police still want to know who the accomplice was who drove the getaway car.
“We are obviously looking for somebody else. The detective that are investigating this are questioning Mr. Alonso at this moment, hoping to find out who his accomplice may be, or accomplices,” said Lt. Jonny Dunnam, a Baton Rouge Police Department public information officer, according to WWLTV.
The murders are rocking this community. The Duplantiers were adored by neighbors, who had nothing but positive things to say about the couple. According to WWLTV, neighbors were shocked at the murders, calling the couple great friends. They had been married for 48 years, and friends in the community called them Bubbie and Susie.
“Everybody looked up to him. He was just a great guy. She really was like Sandy in ‘Grease.’ I mean, she was absolutely beautiful inside and out. It’s just so disheartening to realize they’re both gone,” said family friend Bill O’Quin about the murdered Suzanne, also called Susie.
Police are currently working on getting more details from Ernesto Alonso. He will face murder charges regardless of his cooperation, but police do want to know who helped him out.
What do you think led Ernesto Alonso to kill this elderly couple?
[Image / Screen Capture via WGNO News]