Law enforcement agencies around Southern California were searching Tuesday for a Lake Elsinore man suspected of killing his girlfriend and abducting their 2-year-old son.
Celestine John Stoot Jr., 42, was last seen Monday, when Riverside County sheriff’s investigators allege that he killed Natasha Denise Barlow of San Jacinto.
According to sheriff’s Sgt. Deanna Pecoraro, the attack happened sometime Monday afternoon at a residence in the 17000 block of Hayes Avenue in Lake Elsinore.
Pecoraro said patrol deputies were called to the location to investigate reports of a death and found the 43-year-old woman inside the home. The exact cause of Barlow’s death was not specified, and there was no mention of a possible motive.
According to Pecoraro, detectives immediately identified Stoot as the alleged assailant and suspected that he had fled with his son, Celestine Stoot III.
The boy is Black, 3-feet tall and 30 pounds with brown eyes and black hair. The suspect was described as 5-feet-8 inches tall, about 160 pounds, with brown eyes and black hair.
He was driving a charcoal gray 2020 Kia Optima with a California temporary plate of U335133 or 8VQU461, according to investigators.
A statewide Amber Alert was issued Monday alerting the public to be on the lookout for the car, suspect and child.
Anyone with information was urged to call the sheriff’s Central Homicide Unit at 951-955-2777, or their local law enforcement agency, but make no attempt to contact Stoot, who should be considered armed and dangerous.