Suspect in Marion County deputy's death arrested in Mexico, after being mistakenly released

Article author: 
Lauren Hernandez
Article publisher: 
statesman journal
Article date: 
Sunday, December 24, 2017
Article category: 
Article Body: 

Ten years after a deputy died in a head-on collision, the suspect who fled homicide charges has been arrested in Mexico — ten months after mistakenly getting released by Mexican officials.

Alfredo de Jesus Ascencio, 29, was arrested in the Mexican state of Michoacan on an arrest warrant for the death of Marion County Deputy Kelly Fredinburg and Oscar Ascencio Amaya, 19, according to Oregon State Police.

He was initially arrested in the Mexican state of Puebla on January 20 where he was transported to the state of Baja California. Mexican officials accidentally released him just a month later in February. His arrest warrant remained valid and active while he was at-large.

Oregon State Police officials learned he was arrested in Michoacan on Thursday, Dec. 21.

On June 16, 2007, Fredinburg was traveling southbound on Highway 99-E while pursuing an emergency call when his patrol car was struck head-on by a vehicle driven by De Jesus Ascencio.

Fredinburg's patrol car caught fire and he was pronounced deceased at the scene. He had been with the Marion County Sheriff's Office since August of 2006 after working six years in the Polk County Sheriff's Office. He was 33 years old when he died.

Amaya, de Jesus Ascencio's passenger, was transported to a Portland-area hospital. He died from his injuries.

More: Crash witness haunted by last moments of deputy's life

Oregon State Police investigated the crash and presented its finding to the Marion County Grand Jury on August 3, 2007. De Jesus Ascencio was indicted on two counts of criminally negligent homicide.

Before court officials could arraign him on charges, De Jesus Ascencio fled to Mexico. Investigators believe he fled the United States to avoid prosecution.

Limitations in the extradition treaty prevented De Jesus Ascencio from being returned to the United States, but Oregon prosecutors sought an Article 4 prosecution in 2010 to allow the Mexican judicial system to prosecute him instead.

The paperwork was translated into Spanish and the case was given to Mexican federal judge for review. In 2011, the judge approved the Article 4 paperwork and warrant was issued for De Jesus Ascencio's arrest.

Since learning of his accidental release earlier this year, Oregon State Police and the Marion County District Attorney's Office have been working jointly with the FBI, the U.S. Embassy, Interpol, and the Mexican Attorney General's Office in a joint effort to locate De Jesus Ascencio.

Oregon State Police did not provide additional details.