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Body in box on Md. highway identified

By Paul Duggan

A body found Monday in a cardboard box in Frederick County was that of a District man who had been shot to death, according to D.C. police, who said they have obtained an arrest warrant for a suspect in the killing.

The victim, Jacobo Vazquez, 36, of the 1100 block of Massachusetts Avenue NW, was found just before 10 a.m. Monday by a Maryland highway clean-up crew on a post-weekend patrol for deer carcasses along Interstate 70 just west of the Frederick city line, police said. They said Vazquez, stuffed in a large, blood-stained box on an embankment below the westbound lanes, had been reported missing in the District on Friday.

"There was some identification left at the [highway] scene, not necessarily belonging to the victim," said Sgt. Wayne Wachsmuth, a detective with the Maryland State Police. He declined to elaborate, except to say that the identification led homicide investigators from the District to become involved in the case.

D.C. police said that the suspect named in the arrest warrant, Marvin Palencia, 34, of Hyattsville, was being sought Thursday. Authorities released photos of Palencia and of the vehicle he is believed to be driving, a light green or gray 2007 Honda Odyssey minivan with Maryland license plates reading, "PALNCIA." Police described him as "armed and dangerous."

Investigators would not discuss the circumstances of Vazquez's disappearance, D.C. police spokeswoman Gwendolyn Crump said the killing "appears to be domestic in nature."

In a statement, she said officers on Friday were summoned to the 100 block of Constitution Avenue NW, about a mile and a half from Vazquez's home, "to investigate a report of a missing person."

"Reporting officers alerted detectives due to the suspicious nature of the disappearance," the statement says.

[This post has been updated]

D.C. police are searching for Marvin Palencia, who is a suspect in the case. (Courtesy of D.C. police)

By Paul Duggan  | November 18, 2010; 2:30 PM ET
Categories:  Frederick, Homicide, Paul Duggan, The District  
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Next: Steroid charges dropped in FBI case


Thanks for publishing the suspects picture!

Posted by: 10bestfan | November 18, 2010 2:52 PM | Report abuse

He wins the Darwin award for commiting a crime while driving a vehicle with a license plate like that.

Posted by: blackforestcherry | November 18, 2010 3:33 PM | Report abuse

These are not your father's Americans anymore.

Posted by: slim21 | November 18, 2010 3:59 PM | Report abuse

I get your point but if you are going to refer to someone as an idiot you should use the correct version of "you're an idiot". As you wrote it, you are referring to his idiot.

Posted by: BigDaddy651 | November 18, 2010 4:40 PM | Report abuse

The Head Honcho of the Washington Post Southside Gangtas is back......

Don't you dare misspell a word or he and his crew will beat you a bad one for all to see.....

Posted by: 4thFloor | November 18, 2010 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Slim:My father's Americans lynched black folks at will.

Posted by: darrren12000 | November 18, 2010 6:03 PM | Report abuse

slim21: Perhaps you could enlighten us on who "your father's Americans" were? The authentic Native Americans moved to reservations when the white man took their land. We are, and always have been, a country of immigrants. My mixed family (English-Scots-Irish-German) came to the U.S. about 150 years ago. All four of my wife's grandparents came through Ellis Island from Italy in the early 20th century. My sister-in-law, who teaches Honors Biology in high school, is Mexican-American (again, all four grandparents were immigrants.) Perhaps you prefer white, European neighbors to brown, Latino ones, but that's your problem, not mine.

Posted by: SilverSpring8 | November 18, 2010 10:00 PM | Report abuse

Murderer forgot to remove the airbill from the shipping box before dumping the body.

Posted by: blasmaic | November 19, 2010 7:52 AM | Report abuse


Be careful here.

Posted by: ggant | November 19, 2010 8:27 AM | Report abuse

Where'd he come from? Why was he here in WDC? What job did he hold? Does he have a family? Does he have a past record? You, know WaPo crime reporters...all that old Dragnet "who, what, when, where, why."

Posted by: wjc1va | November 19, 2010 8:56 AM | Report abuse

And another contender emerges(if you've ever seen this Seinfeld episode you get it).
Just ironic that this person referred to someone else as an idiot but used the incorrect form of "your" versus "you're".
My wife is an English teacher so grammar is sort of a big thing with us...I also can't stand when people use the incorrect form of "there" versus "their" or "they're".
I'm trying to be a kinder and gentler internet thug since the mid-term elections. Hope and change and all that fuzzy warm stuff...

Posted by: BigDaddy651 | November 19, 2010 9:24 AM | Report abuse

Due to past lynching America must now import a large criminal class to dump bodies on the side of our roads. This is perfectly logical.

When this man is caught could we ask him if he is in the country legally? I sure hope if someone asks him that his feelings won't be hurt.

Posted by: dnice22015 | November 19, 2010 10:03 AM | Report abuse

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