Phoenix police: Man arrested in killing of business associate

Posted: Updated:
Juan Luis Zermeno By Christina O'Haver Juan Luis Zermeno By Christina O'Haver
Juan Luis Zermeno By Christina O'Haver Juan Luis Zermeno By Christina O'Haver

PHOENIX -- Phoenix police have arrested a man in connection with the death of his business associate.

Police say 39-year-old Juan Luis Zermeno was involved in a dispute with 38-year-old Jesus Cortez over business matters.

Zermeno was arrested without incident Friday after allegedly trying to sell Cortez's two vehicles to another associate. Police believe he stole the vehicles from Cortez's residence at the time of the homicide.

Police found Cortez dead inside his home near 67th Avenue and Camelback Road Wednesday afternoon after responding for a welfare check. Family members reported that they had not seen or heard from their father in days.

Friends and family members helped police force entry into the home, and Cortez was reportedly found with obvious signs of trauma.

Zermeno was booked into jail on one count each of first-degree murder, first-degree burglary, theft and trafficking in stolen property.

Police are asking for the public's help locating Cortez's two vehicles. They are searching for a white 2006 Ford F-150 pickup truck with Arizona license plate BKF7293 and a white 2007 Cadillac Escalade SUV with Arizona plate BEP6391.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Phoenix police at 602-262-6141 or Silent Witness at 480-WITNESS.

RELATED:

Body found inside Phoenix home