Fairbanks man charged with first degree murder in suspicious death investigation

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FAIRBANKS, Alaska - A Fairbanks man was arrested in Anchorage and charged with first degree murder in the Nov. 21 death of 56 year old Jose Raul Santiago in Fairbanks.

On Tuesday, Alaska State Troopers released surveillance video showing a white Volvo SUV pulling a rolled up piece of carpeting down a driveway onto College Road near the Aurora subdivision.

That vehicle was later found crashed around mile 2.2 of Ballaine Road. Santiago was believed to have driving the vehicle when it left the road, entered an an embankment, and crashed into an elevated driveway, according to an AST dispatch from Nov. 21. Investigators determined that Santiago had been ejected into the passenger's side floor board and died as a result of those injuries.

But on Nov. 29, the results of an autopsy determined that Santiago died as a result of a homicide.

According to AST, investigators searched Santiago's apartment on College Road and found evidence of a homicide, including a missing large area rug.

That's when detectives located the video from a nearby business showing the Volvo SUV pulling a large rolled up carpet around 6:00 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 21.

The vehicle crash was reported about an hour later.

Troopers began receiving tips from witnesses and surveillance video showing a person walking from the crash to a nearby gas station, where he used the gas station phone to call a cab.

Investigators were able to track the destination of the cab to a warehouse in the Aurora subdivision, and determined that the man who took the cab ride there was an employee at the warehouse — 43 year old John Monroe of Fairbanks.

Monroe left Fairbanks and moved to Anchorage shortly after, according to AST. Monroe was located by Anchorage by AST and Anchorage Police Department.

He has been charged with first degree murder and tampering with evidence.