49-Year-Old Man Arrested After Woman’s Body Found Inside Box at San Bernardino Parking Lot Last Month

A 49-year-old man was arrested after a woman’s body was found inside a wooden box at a San Bernardino parking lot last month, authorities said on Saturday.

Rico Sanchez is shown in a booking photo released by the San Bernardino Police Department on July 13, 2018.

Rico Sanchez is shown in a booking photo released by the San Bernardino Police Department on July 13, 2018.

Rico Sanchez, of San Bernardino, was arrested on suspicion of homicide on Friday after detectives found cell phone, video and other evidence, according to a San Bernardino Police Department news release.

“The victim and suspect were known to each other,” the Police Department said in a statement.

Marlene Santellan is seen in an undated photo. (Credit: San Bernardino Police Department)

Marlene Santellan is seen in an undated photo. (Credit: San Bernardino Police Department)

The woman, identified as Marlene Santellan, 34, of San Bernardino, was found after 8 a.m. June 10, the Police Department said previously.

San Bernardino police said they received a 911 call about a dead body in the parking lot in the 2500 block of North Del Rosa and discovered a woman wrapped in a blue tarp who had been placed in a “constructed” wooden box.

Detectives learned during their investigation a person driving a “distinct” U-Haul truck dumped Santellan’s body on the night of June 2, authorities said.

Searching through the moving company’s records, authorities discovered the suspect’s mom rented a “distinct” U-Haul truck hours just before the body was disposed on the same date.

Looking through Santellan’s cell phone records resulted in finding her phone at the San Bernardino home of the suspect and his mother and a search warrant was served to get the phone, authorities said.

Additionally, items purchased from a San Bernardino hardware store were found near Santellan’s body and detectives were able to collect video and electronic evidence from the store that showed the suspect buying them.

Anyone with information on the case is asked to contact San Bernardino Police Department Detective Cunningham at 909-384-5745 or Sgt. Kokesh at 909-384-5613.