A Marine already in custody for theft of an assault weapon was booked Tuesday on suspicion of murdering another Marine’s wife, authorities said.
The latest allegation against Louis Ray Perez came a week after the body of 22-year-old Brittany Killgore was found near a lake in Southern California.
Sheriff's investigators identified Perez, 45, as a person of interest shortly after Killgore's body was discovered.
He was arrested the day after Killgore disappeared for allegedly stealing the assault weapon. Prosecutors said he stole the weapon from a man in early February but have not indicated whether they believe it was used to kill Killgore.
He has not been charged in her murder.
“We have just gotten the case,” district attorney spokeswoman Tanya Sierra told the San Diego Union Tribune. “It is under review.”
Another suspect, Jessica Lynn Lopez, 25, pleaded not guilty to murder last week in Killgore's death. She is being held on $3 million bail.
Authorities have not said whether Lopez and Perez knew each other or whether they knew the victim.
Jeff Reichert, Perez's attorney, did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment.
Perez, who has been in the military for 16 years, has no criminal history. He is married and has lived in the San Diego area for about 10 years, Reichert said in court last week. He is being held on $500,000 bail.
Killgore’s body was found near Lake Skinner in Riverside County about 25 miles northeast of her modest apartment complex in Fallbrook, a town of 38,000 people near Camp Pendleton.
She died less than a week after filing for divorce from Lance Cpl. Cory Killgore, a Marine who was in Afghanistan when she disappeared. She cited irreconcilable differences in her divorce filing, which gave no other details.
Cory Killgore has not been named as a suspect or person of interest in the killing. The couple married in July 2010.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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