Suspect identified in Five Points homicide

DENVER — The Denver Police Department has identified the person arrested in connection to a homicide in the Five Points area Sunday.

Jonathan Diaz-Jimenez, 27, was being held for investigation of first-degree murder.

According to the arrest affidavit, officers responded to Park Avenue West and Lawrence Street around 10:45 a.m. Sunday on a report of an assault in progress. An officer contacted several witnesses trying to help an unresponsive male victim.

The document states that officers were given a detailed suspect description and were told that the suspect had asked the victim for money. When the victim said he did not have any, the suspect began punching him and choked him until he passed out.

DPD said officers found Diaz-Jimenez at 10:52 a.m. at Park Avenue and Broadway. He matched witnesses’ descriptions and was arrested.

The victim was pronounced dead at 11:03 a.m.

Additionally, detectives used surveillance footage from the Samaritan House Homeless Shelter. According to the affidavit, video showed the altercation between Diaz-Jimenez and the victim.

“It appeared on the video that the two were communicating with each other from across the street before the altercation. The video showed the victim dropping his cane as he was trying to get away from Diaz-Jimenez. The video showed Diaz-Jimenez strike the victim several times, knocking him to the ground. Once on the ground, Diaz-Jimenez continued to struggle with the deceased and it appeared that the suspect was grabbing the victim around the throat area and/or trying to grab something from the deceased’s hand, but this was unclear,” the affidavit reads.

The video then allegedly showed someone helping the victim up off the ground as Diaz-Jimenez began to roll around. The victim was standing on his own, but then suddenly fell and became unresponsive.

The victim was later identified as 66-year-old Anthony Lanford.

On Nov. 23, Diaz-Jimenez was charged with second-degree murder.

Anyone with information is encouraged to contact Metro Denver Crime Stoppers at 720-913-7867. Tips can be made anonymously.

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