31-Year-old Francisco Macias named prime suspect in crime spree

New details on the suspect connected to the deadly crime spree in Elkhart emerged Wednesday.

In a press release, Lt. Laura Koch said 31-year-old Francisco Macias stabbed 30-year-old Maria Miranda, and hurt a child at the home on 1822 Mediterranean Avenue. Macias is also accused of stabbing 33-year-old Maria Aceituno Sanchez at 1113 Whitfield Court early Monday morning.


In between the two stabbings, police said he may have set fire to a Grant Street home. Three died in the inferno: 38-year-old Jose Aguilar, and his two sons, Adolfo and Ricardo, ages 7 and 13.

Macias is said to be a person of interest. Fire officials previously confirmed that whoever started the fire threw a 20-pound propane tank rigged with an explosive into the house.

Mayor Dave Moore told ABC 57  that same type of explosive was found inside the car that burst into flames after the crime spree.

The white Ford Mustang was connected to the crime spree, and is registered by Macias.

The body was too charred to positively identify the man.

But, Mayor Dick Moore said the community is safe.

“I’ve come close enough on this to believe that in the end, that will be the story. That it will be this person, the perpetrator who did these crimes. But I need to say, I don’t know that for sure, but I’m comfortable enough to say to this community, that I don’t believe that it’s something out there, still out there, that you need to worry about,” Moore said.

The press release also stated Police and Fire officials will not be answering any further questions, or holding any press conferences until the investigation is closed.

Mayor Moore said it could hurt the process if officials release too much information.

“It’s more than a policy. It’s something that we need to be careful about. As long as it’s under investigation, we can’t say too much. “

ABC 57 also went to the Prosecutor’s Office in search of answers.

The Chief Deputy said some of the information released by fire officials are rumors. She would not go into detail on rumor versus fact. She also said now is the time for investigators to get answers, not the community, adding that if there was a danger to the community, the community would know about it.

While officials will not answer any more questions, people close to the Aguilar family said they deserve to know the truth.

Carl Forbes worked with Jose Aguilar at Hacienda in Elkhart for three years.

“We’re all shocked that this happened to him. We don’t understand why. I guess that’s just our biggest problem. We just, we just, we would like to have answer,” said Forbes.

Forbes described his friend as a dedicated family man, and well-loved by many.

“The smile on his face was infectious. The way he would just walk into the building singing. Just enjoying life! That’s who Jose was,” said Forbes. “We’re at a loss. We’ve lost a great friend. And the community has lost a great person.”


Share this article: