MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – Before he recognized the man who was arrested for allegedly abducting, raping, and shooting a 12-year old boy, Vicente Izaguirre said that he had seen him acting strangely in South Beach.
Izaguirre said that before officers arrested Aliex Santiesteban he parked his black car near a dumpster in an alley on Monday, and he pulled stuff out of his car and threw it away.
Izaguirre, who said he never interacted with Santiesteban, said he considered him a neighbor. Santiesteban, 43, frequented the area since his ex-girlfriend lives there, police said.
“He looked like a crazy guy,” Izaguirre said. “Sometimes he looks like, you know, so crazy.”
Santiesteban lived in the Island Living apartments in Miami’s Overtown neighborhood, steps away from the Overtown Youth Center. After leaving the boy to die on Saturday in Miami-Dade County’s Brownsville neighborhood, he drove to South Beach, police said.
Santiesteban parked near the intersection of Euclid Avenue and 10th Street and called police officers, detectives said.
According to Officer Ernesto Rodriguez, a spokesman for the Miami Beach Police Department, Santiesteban alleged that he was the victim of a robbery. He received medical attention at Mount Sinai Medical Center in Miami Beach, police said.
Santiesteban had a cast on his left hand when he was booked on Tuesday at the Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Center. Detectives believe the robbery report was an attempt at an alibi and he was injured during a struggle with the victim in Brownsville.
“There is nothing in his history that would connect him to a crime of this type,” said Maj. Brian Rafky, of the Miami-Dade Police Department’s special victims bureau.
Records show Santiesteban had been arrested in the past for aggravated assault and resisting arrest, but those charges were ultimately dropped.
Detectives seized Santiesteban’s black car and gun on Tuesday. He is facing charges of attempted murder, sexual battery with a deadly weapon/serious injury, and kidnapping a child under 13.