A Palm Desert couple accused in the arson death of a former Coachella Valley resident in Indiana were extradited to that state to face prosecution, local jail records show.
Noel Montes Cazares, 48, and Misty Lou Allen, 44, were extradited to Monroe County, Indiana, where they are charged in the death of 85-year-old former Palm Desert resident Lerae Britain Moeller Bush, whose Bloomington home was burned down on Feb. 10.
Media reports out of Indiana have cited court documents alleging that Cazares was posing as the octogenarian’s son, “Giovanni Bush,” and that the motive for her killing may have been related to a prospective inheritance.
Cazares was arrested April 5 in Palm Desert by deputies who pulled him over on Fred Waring Drive, near Painters Path. Investigators in Indiana had notified local authorities of “a murder suspect who had fled Indiana and was in Palm Desert,” according to a sheriff’s statement.
Cazares faces charges of murder, arson, neglect of a dependent and obstruction of justice.
Allen, identified by Indiana law enforcement as Cazares’ girlfriend, was arrested around 12:30 p.m. April 11 in the 78100 block of Highway 111 in Rancho Mirage. Indiana State Police reported that she had an outstanding arrest warrant on charges of assisting a criminal and obstruction of justice out of Monroe County.
Bush formerly lived in the Coachella Valley and made local headlines in January 2017, when she went missing from her Palm Desert home for about five hours, prompting the sheriff’s department to ask for help in locating her.