Photo: Carlos “Charles” Cruz
On June 13, 2020, 25-year old Carlos “Charles” Cruz of Parlier spent several hours at a Fowler home where his estranged wife was visiting her relatives. A dispute occurred which resulted in Cruz shooting two of her family members, 42-year old Rafael Garcia and his son 16-year old Jonathan Garcia. Both victims died at the home while Cruz fled.
Fowler Police were called to the home, located on the 200 block of North 5th Street. They alerted surrounding law enforcement of what had occurred and Cruz’s vehicle’s description. Fowler Police requested FCSO Homicide Unit take over the investigation, which they accepted.
Cruz’s black Subaru was spotted in Reedley by Reedley police. They initiated a traffic stop but Cruz refused. He headed westbound in the eastbound lanes of Manning Avenue, traveling at high speeds.
About 15 minutes after Cruz was first spotted, officers observed a crash on Manning and De Wolf. Cruz had crashed his Subaru into the third engine of a train passing through the area.
Cruz was found inside the car, deceased, and with an apparent gunshot wound. A handgun was recovered at the crash site.
An autopsy report confirmed Cruz’s gunshot wound was self-inflicted. Results have not yet come back regarding further ballistics and toxicology tests. The homicide case is ongoing.
On May 15, 2020 Cruz was arrested for domestic violence and three other charges. The three other charges qualified for the zero dollar bail, setting bond at $25,000 for only the domestic violence charge. He posted bail and was released the same day of his arrest. The photo is from that arrest.
Photo from FCSO