More details have emerged in the possible homicide of a Mexican whose body was found partially submerged in Elkhorn Creek in Scott County — several days after he was reported missing.
Scott County Coroner John Goble has declined to provide more information on the death of Jorge Zamudio Flores, 29, other than to say it was being investigated as a homicide. The Scott County Sheriff’s Office and state police are investigating.
However, Scott County Sgt. Josh Hutchinson said detectives have identified some people of interest and were searching for Flores’ vehicle. It is believed that one or more people may have stolen the truck, a 2002 Blue Chevy Avalanche with Kentucky license plate 214-NAY.
No arrests have been made.
Flores lived on Owenton Road, and The State Journal interviewed some tobacco pickers at an Owenton farm Saturday evening.
Urbano Romero, 52, said Flores used to oversee the group of pickers. Flores gave Urbano his job on Sept. 4, Urbano said, and that night around 8:30 he left to bring more workers to the farm. He didn’t return the next day for work.
“Nobody showed up and I wondered what was up,” Urbano said.
Flores’ body wasn’t found until Sept. 7 when a fisherman saw it in the creek. Urbano said he and other workers reported Flores missing.
The other workers at the farm had worked for Flores for a week.
Urbano spoke fluent English and Spanish and translated The State Journal’s questions to the workers. One worker, Jesus Tolentino, 27, knew one of Flores’ cousins in South Carolina. He said he didn’t think Flores was mixed up with any bad people.
“He said he didn’t drink, he didn’t use drugs and he never knew that he was in trouble with anybody,” Urbano translated.
When asked if Flores was carrying any large amounts of cash used to pay the workers, Tolentino said it was a possibility. Urbano said he hopes the case is solved.
“His truck has to be somewhere, and I hope someone can find it,” Urbano said.
Getting Flores’ body back to his home country has become somewhat of an international affair.
Goble said Friday he was working with the Mexican consulate in Indianapolis to get Flores’ coffin on a flight out of the country. Goble said Delta airlines only flies one coffin from the United States to Mexico per day.
Goble said he contacted one of Flores’ cousins in South Carolina, who contacted a sister in Acapulco, Mexico, who is getting in contact with Flores’ mother, who lives two hours from Acapulco in a village with no phone.