In June 2016, Krystal Mitchell, a 30-year-old mother of two from Phoenix, was found brutally murdered in an apartment in San Diego. Her boyfriend, Raymond McLeod Jr., became the prime suspect in her killing but had fled the country, making him one of the U.S. Marshals' 15 Most Wanted fugitives. Determined to seek justice for her daughter, Josephine Wentzel, a retired police detective, came out of retirement and vowed to bring McLeod to justice.
Wentzel, driven by her maternal instincts, started a website dedicated to finding McLeod and posted wanted fliers on social media platforms in Mexico and Central America. She also reached out to hostels and newspapers in those regions, relentlessly pursuing any leads or information about his whereabouts. Her efforts eventually paid off when the U.S. Marshals Service received a tip that McLeod might be working as an English instructor at a school in El Salvador. Acting on the information, McLeod was apprehended and extradited back to the United States.
During a press conference announcing McLeod's capture, Wentzel expressed her determination to ensure he would never be released from jail, stating that her primary goal was to see him convicted for her daughter's brutal murder. San Diego Police Chief David Nisleit commended Wentzel for her unwavering dedication and described her as the driving force behind keeping the case alive and ensuring that McLeod would face justice.
At the time of the murder, Mitchell and McLeod were visiting San Diego and staying with friends. McLeod, who had a history of domestic violence, was the last person seen with Mitchell before she was found strangled to death in a bedroom. Authorities believe that McLeod had special training in clandestine operations, which enabled him to evade capture for several years.
Josephine Wentzel's tireless pursuit of her daughter's killer showcases the incredible strength and determination of a mother seeking justice. Her unwavering commitment to seeing the case through and ensuring that McLeod receives a life sentence demonstrates her love for her daughter and her determination to prevent him from harming anyone else in the future.