The 46-year-old man arrested in connection with the disappearance of Leticia Martinez-Cosman remains in jail today, and probable-cause documents in his case reveal what led police to him, and what they have found out so far. The man is not yet charged so we are not publishing his name; we’re publishing the probable-cause narrative from today’s documents without any names except those of law-enforcement officers. Though the jail docket shows that the suspect was initially booked for investigation of homicide among other possible crimes, a judge has not found probable cause for that, but did find probable cause to continue holding him for investigation of kidnapping, assault, theft, attempted murder, and unlawful firearm possession. The suspect did not appear in court today and bail has not yet been set, according to the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office. Here is the narrative, a type of document generally initially written by police – note that it describes an assault and injuries in places:
Leticia “Leti” Martinez-Cosman was last seen 03/31/2023, heading to the Mariners game in Seattle. The Photo (previously distributed by police) was taken by Leticia at that game, which began at around 1900 hours. The photo was texted to her (friend #1) and it was later provided to the police. Leticia had invited the male pictured with her below, to join her at the game.
Leticia met the male … at a Costco in Seattle on 03/19/2023.
Leticia was with her friend … at Costco when she met (the suspect) in the food court area. (Her friend) remembered that (he) had a phone number with a 509 area code, which she recognized as being from eastern Washington. (He) is estimated to be in his mid to late 40’s, and he stated he had attended West Seattle High School.
Leticia has three vehicles registered to her in DOL. Given that two have been accounted of at her residence, it is believed that Leticia drove her Honda CR-V to the game. As described below, Leticia has not been seen by family and friends since the picture was taken at the game.
There were text messages from Leticia’s cell phone to her (friend #2) the next morning, 04/01/2023. (Friend #2) subsequently provided those to investigators. One message from Leticia’s phone to (friend #2) said that as she was leaving the game the night before, Leticia ran into an old boyfriend, and ended up hanging out with him all night. The same friend later texted Leticia, asking what her/Leticia’s plans were that evening. A text response from Leticia’s cell was that she was going to go see her “friend again” that night. Leticia was scheduled to babysit at about 1830 hours, but also sent a text message canceling that around the same time that she texted (friend #2) saying that she was ok and was babysitting. While these messages came from Leticia’s phone, the author of the messages cannot be verified.
Multiple attempts to call Leticia’s phone went unanswered and eventually the phone appeared to be turned off, because all calls were directly routed to voicemail.
Leticia’s brother … reported Leticia as a missing person with the King County Sheriff’s Office on 04/02/2023 at about 1300 hours. When asked about the messages that Leticia’s phone had sent on 04/01/2023, (her brother) indicated that these texts were odd and uncharacteristic of Leticia.
Leticia lives with her adult son (who) has been diagnosed with Autism, Aspergers, and OCD. (He) lives at home but due to his conditions he rarely leaves their home and has very limited contact with others. Though Leticia is his mother and caregiver, he has limited contact with her on a day-to-day basis. (Her son) told detectives that he had not seen his mother since Friday, March 31st during the daytime. (He) stated that around 2:00 am, on 4/02/2023, he was awoken to the sound of an unknown adult male knocking on his bedroom door (inside the home) waking him up. (He) stated he did not know the man but believed him to be a neighbor based upon what he said. (He) was unable to provide a detailed description of the man or the vehicle, due to his disability, but indicated that he was a white male, 30’s-40’s, average build and height, had facial hair and wore glasses. (He) stated that the male wore a hooded sweatshirt and a covid style facemask.
The unknown male told him that his mother had been in accident and that he was going to take (him) to see her at the hospital. (Her son) said that they got into a vehicle and later described it as an SUV. (Her son) said they drove around for what seemed like hours and stopped when the unknown male said he had to get some water and got out of the vehicle. (Her son) said that the unknown male got into the vehicle behind him (as he sat in the front passenger’s seat) and tried to cover (her son’s) face and neck with an unknown type of material. He stated he thought that the male was trying to kill him by smothering or strangling him with the material. (Her son) is over 6’ tall, over 200 lbs, and in good physical shape, so he was able to get free and a fight ensued inside the passenger area of the vehicle. The unknown male attempted to strangle (Leticia’s son) with his forearm on his neck and at some point, (he) was able to bite the unknown male on the hand, which caused the male bleed all over (her son’s) face. During the struggle in the vehicle, the horn was pressed several times by (her son’s) head.
At some point in the struggle, the unknown male realized he was unable to overpower (Leticia’s son) and now injured and bleeding he told (him) that he has a gun, although (he) never saw one. The male then began telling (him) that he was doing this for his mother and that this was to spare him from being committed to institution because of his conditions. The fight turned into more of an argument and dialogue between the two inside the vehicle. (Her son) still had access to his phone, so he tried to call his mother, but the call went directly to voicemail. When that didn’t work, he called his father … who lives in Texas.
Because of the stress of the moment and his conditions, (he) was not able to articulate exactly what was happening, but his father heard someone in the background talking to (his son) and he told (his son) to hang up and call 911.
(He) was able to get just outside of the vehicle and called 911. (He) was connected to a call taker for the Renton Police Department and in the 911 recordings, a male voice can be heard in the background with (him). As (he) is on the phone with 911, the unknown male got into the vehicle and drove off.
(Leticia’s son) walked into an adjacent residential yard and hid in the bushes. (He) had a difficult time articulating the circumstances and his unknown location with the 911 call taker. As this was happening, other calls to the Renton Police Department were made to report a vehicle honking its horn at nearly 4:00 am and then a suspicious male hiding from vehicles in the bushes. Renton Police Officers responded and contacted (Leticia’s son), who was visibly upset and covered in blood. Due to the stress of the moment and his conditions, (he) had a difficult time trying to explain what happened to the officers. (He) was transported to the nearby Valley Medical Center but was subsequently not admitted to the hospital. Renton Police Officers made contact with (his father), who told him about the calls from the vehicle, but in the end no actions were taken to locate the suspect vehicle. (Leticia’s son) was driven home by an Uber, and upon arriving home called a friend to take him to his uncle’s home … As (he) told (his uncle) about the incident, in connection with the lack of communication with Leticia, (his uncle) contacted the King County Sheriff’s Office to report the incident and Leticia as a missing person.
On 04/02/2023, at 0649 hours, a little over 2 hours after (the) incident in Renton, personnel from the Seattle Fire Department responded to 904 Golf Dr S, in Seattle, for a vehicle fire. The vehicle, subsequently identified as Leticia’s 2016 Honda CRV … was fully engulfed in flames as it was parked on the side of the road. Once the fire was extinguished, the vehicle sat on the road until it was impounded by the Seattle Police Department on 04/04/2023 at about 0400 hours. During an initial examination by ATF Certified Fire Investigators, the fire appears to have been intentionally started in the passenger’s compartment of the vehicle with the use of an unknown accelerant and was not the result of an engine fire.
When investigators with the King County Sheriff’s Office learned that Leticia’s vehicle had been recovered burned in the City of Seattle, and since her last known location was also in the City of Seattle, the investigation was turned over to the Seattle Police Department (SPD) on 4/04/2023 at about 1100 hours. SPD Detective Conine was assigned as the primary investigator.
Based upon the totality of the circumstances of Leticia being an at-risk missing person, Detective Conine obtained exigent call detail records (CDR’s) for Leticia’s phone … from her mobile carrier T-Mobile. Leticia’s CDR’s indicated that both before the Mariners’ game, on 3/31/2023 around 1704 hours, and the next day, on 4/01/2023 at about 0616 hours, Leticia’s phone connected to the number of 509-xxx-xxxx. Records checks identified this number
as being associated with (the suspect). This phone number had been provided by (him) and listed in recent regional police reports. The WA DOL photo of (the suspect) was obtained, and the male depicted with Leticia at the Mariners’ game is consistent with the male depicted in (the suspect’s) DOL (and other social media) photos. (The suspect) is the registered owner of a tan 1999 Audi A6 …
Law enforcement records checks identified that on 4/04/2023, Costco reported a theft of 10k worth of jewelry from the location at 4401 4th Av S, Seattle. This is the same Costco that Leticia met (the suspect) at on 03-19-2023. The jewelry suspect was captured on security footage, and the suspect’s vehicle license was recorded. The suspect vehicle was identified as (his) 1999 Audi A6 … and the suspect depicted in the theft is consistent with (him), including wearing similar clothing as depicted in Leticia’s Mariners’ selfie.
On 4/05/2023 at 1557 hours, King County Superior Court Judge Aimee Sutton authorized an Order for Location Information, a Search Warrant for Records and a Non-Disclosure for Verizon Wireless for (the suspect’s) cellphone … On 4/05/2023 at 1831 hours, Verizon began providing location information for (his) phone, which identified him moving through the north end of Seattle. At about 1908 hours, (he) was contacted after entering the Costco at 1175 N 205th St, Shoreline, WA 98133. As SPD personnel was descending upon that location, based upon the information provided by Verizon, Captain Todd Miller of the King County Sheriff’s Office (KCSO) was inside the Costco working in uniform in an off-duty security capacity. Costco personnel, aware of the jewelry theft on 4/04/2023, recognized (the suspect) (who was wearing the same clothing from the theft incident) from images provided by the Seattle Costco. Captain Miller contacted (the suspect) inside the Costco and asked him to come to an office, which (he) agreed to do. SPD and other KCSO personnel contacted Captain Miller and (the suspect) was taken into custody by SPD officers. (He) was advised of his Miranda rights at the scene and initially told officers that he did not have a cellphone or vehicle with him at Costco. (He) was transported to SPD Headquarters, where he was placed in an interview room and readvised of his Miranda rights.
SPD officers located (his) tan 1999 Audi A6 … parked in the Costco parking lot. (He) had been in possession of the keys to his vehicle at the time of arrest and using those keys, and under the exigency of trying to locate Leticia, the closed trunk of (the suspect’s) vehicle was checked, but she was not located in the vehicle. (His) cellphone was observed in the vehicle, and in an effort to preserve the evidence on the phone, the cellphone was recovered from the vehicle as evidence. Verizon provided subsequent location data of the cellphone of 509-xxxxxxx that was consistent with the phone being recovered from (his) vehicle and being transported by the Seattle Police Department for evidence processing.
While at headquarters, (he) was interviewed by detectives. (He) stated that he had lived in Ellensburg for many years but had recently been staying with friends in Seattle. (He) confirmed that his cellphone number was 509-xxxxxxx, but (he) again denied that he had a vehicle or cellphone with him at Costco.
When asked about his activities and whereabouts during the last week, (he) stated he had gone to Ellensburg on Sunday the 2nd, but had otherwise been in the Seattle area. (He) was asked about attending any events or concerts in the last week and he stated he had not. (He) was wearing a Seattle Mariners wristband at the time of his arrest, but took the wristband off and hid it in his pocket before the interview. (He) was specifically asked multiple times if he had attended any Seattle Mariners games this year and he stated he had not. When asked about the wristband that he had been wearing, (he) stated that this had been given to him by his friend … (He) was then shown a photograph of Leticia and asked if he knew her. (He) initially stated that he had not seen her before, but then stated that he had seen her at Costco. (He) started to say her name and got out “Marti” before stopping and stated that he did not know her. When asked about the Costco meeting, he stated that someone had approached him and introduced themselves to him, but was not sure if it was her. (He) stated she kind of looks familiar but also looks
(He) was then shown the above depicted photograph of him and Leticia at the game. At this point (he) changed his story and admitted that he had been at the Mariners game this year, that he had been there with Leticia and that the wristband was given to him upon entering the Diamond Club at the game. When asked about information on Laticia, (he) stated that he doesn’t know where she is at and that she ran into some guy at the end of the game and left with her.
(he) then stated that the only thing that he remembers is that he wanted an attorney. At this point the direct interview … was stopped.
At the time of his contact, (he) was wearing a Seattle Mariners hat, black glasses, a Seattle Kraken sweatshirt, a light blue shirt, gray sweatpants, and multicolored athletic shoes. (he) had numerous visible injuries on his body, including many cuts and scrapes on his hands, including some (right thumb, right middle finger, left middle finger) that were covered by band-aids. (he) had cuts and scrapes on his face, arms and body and had bruises on his torso and arms. The marks on his body, including the cuts, scrapes and bruises, were in a healing state and appeared to be several days old, with the cuts and scrapes beginning to scab over. Initial photographs were taken by detectives of the injures as (his) clothing was recovered for evidence. While packaging (his) clothing as evidence, detectives observed apparent blood on the inside of (his) right shoe.
Next steps in the case would be a bail hearing and, if prosecutors make that decision, to file charges. Meantime, the victim’s whereabouts remain unknown, and police are still interested in tips – 206-233-5000. As has been discussed by commenters, many here remember Ms. Martinez-Cosman from her years of running the Cafe Rozella coffee shop in South Delridge.