Arrangements are being made to bring both suspects in the October killings of a married Baton Rouge couple back from Florida to face potential charges in Louisiana.
The two suspects, 42-year-old Ernesto Llerena Alonso and 48-year-old Frank Garcia, were arrested nearly a month apart at Garcia’s home in Hollywood, Florida.
Garcia, who was booked into jail in nearby Fort Lauderdale on Wednesday evening, waived extradition Monday morning and is expected to be returned to Louisiana in the coming days, said Kristi Grimm, a spokeswoman for the Broward County, Florida State’s Attorney’s Office.
Alonso had initially contested extradition to Louisiana after he was arrested Oct. 21 but decided Friday not to file a writ of habeas corpus that would’ve continued efforts to keep him from being returned to Louisiana to face prosecution.
The two men, who are cousins, are both facing two counts each of first-degree murder and second-degree kidnapping in the slayings of Denis “Bubbie” Duplantier, 71, and Suzanne “Suzy” Duplantier, 70. They were discovered strangled in their truck, which was found abandoned at a Hammond gas station Oct. 19. A safe inside their house on Highland Road in Baton Rouge was found open, with cash missing.
Alonso had worked as a landscaper for the couple for several years and lived in an apartment above a barn on the Duplantiers’ property off Nicholson Drive. Police do not believe Garcia had lived or worked in Baton Rouge.
Both men were arrested at Garcia’s home at 2434 Garfield St. in Hollywood. Authorities recovered Alonso’s white Chevrolet pickup, which was captured on video camera following the Duplantiers’ truck at the Hammond gas station, at Garcia’s house along with a large amount of cash and a number of unspecified items believed to have been stolen from the Duplantiers’ home.
Officers with the Baton Rouge Police Department will be bringing both men back to Baton Rouge by the first week of December, said Baton Rouge Police spokesman Cpl. Don Coppola, but he declined to discuss the exact plans for the extradition.