The family of an Arizona woman who was killed in San Diego in 2016 gathered for a vigil outside the County Administration building Tuesday to honor her life and call for help from the public in the international search for her one-time boyfriend and accused killer.
The San Diego County District Attorney's Office offered an $11,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of Raymond McLeod, a U.S. Marine veteran wanted in the killing of Krystal Mitchell in Allied Gardens.
The DA's Office said Tuesday that McLeod may be traveling in Central America or Mexico and has been seen in Guatemala, Beliz and Mexico. He has been charged by the office with murder and there is a warrant issued for his arrest.
Mitchell, 30, was found in an apartment on Mission Gorge Road. The Arizona woman and McLeod were visiting friends when she died, police said.
SDPD Homicide Unit detectives deemed her death suspicious but offered little details beyond that she had trauma to her chest area as the investigation is ongoing.
Krystal was a visitor who came to San Diego frequently from Phoenix, her mother Josephine Funes Wentzel said.
She was a single mom who met McLeod in her job as a property manager.
Candlelight vigil held at Waterfront Park to bring attention to Krystal Mitchell’s 2016 death. Her ex-boyfriend Raymond Mitchell who’s suspected of killing her has been spotted in Central America. 11k reward. pic.twitter.com/GZusQ7Wya9— Omari Fleming (@OmariNBCSD) April 4, 2018
Wentzel, a former police detective, spoke at the vigil and called McLeod a "ticking time bomb" that needs to be brought to justice.
"The only reason why would have been with someone like this, or this person, is because he is charming, he is deceiving, he is a liar and he is a viper. His whole purpose is to destroy and hurt women and harm women for his own pleasure."
Mother of murder victim,Krystal Mitchell, pleading with public to help find Krystal’s killer. Police say he ex-boyfriend, Raymond “RJ” Mc Cleod, killed her. An international search for him is underway after he stole her car & crossed into Mexico. $11k reward being offered. #NBC7 pic.twitter.com/3rKFQ2QhiH— Omari Fleming (@OmariNBCSD) April 4, 2018
Law enforcement officials, friends and family at the vigil called for anyone with information regarding McLeod's whereabouts to come forward.
District Attorney Summer Stephan said it's important that her office shines a spotlight on McLeod so that "any lies or deceit he's telling other women, we make sure someone out there warns whoever he is trying to trap so potentially it can save another life."
Wentzel said she's not out for revenge, just justice, and that the family is hoping for any tip whatsoever that might help bring McLeod out of hiding.
At a news conference earlier in the day, Wentzel said that "there was nothing to alert [Mitchell] that he was a terrible person."
She said as a detective she’s had to inform parents when something tragic has happened to their child.
“And I’m on this side and I received that message that night. It’s been the hardest thing,” she said.
San Diego police released images of McLeod's chest, shoulder and arm tattoos. One image shows him during a workout at the gym. There are also images where he is bearded as well as clean shaven.
McLeod is described as 5-foot-11 and 245 pounds. Police said he may have access to weapons.
He is from the Phoenix area and uses the names "RJ", "Matt" or "Mateo."
His last reported location was in Guatemala in March of 2017.
The DA's office says it has an extradition plan in place if McLeod is caught and arrested.
Anyone with information on McLeod or his whereabouts can contact the SDPD Homicide Unit at (619) 531-2293 or SDPD dispatch at (619) 531-2000, or Crime Stoppers at (888) 580-8477.