Real Names: Jorge Mendez and Jose Luis Rios
Aliases: Flacco (Jose)
Wanted For: Murder
Missing Since: December 1995
Details: Jorge Mendez and Jose "Flacco" Rios, two East Houston street gang members, are wanted for the brutal murder of nineteen-year-old Kristi Martin in Houston, Texas in 1995. On the night of December 23, 1995, Kristi and three high school friends, Wendy Wright, brothers Joe and Sal Barrera, met up for the Christmas break and went to a restaurant in Houston. Afterwards, they went to hang out at the River Terrace Park, a local hangout that was at one time a safe place. However, the park was no longer neutral territory, and Mendez and Rios were at the park which they called "their turf".
As Sal and Kristi stood outside of the car talking, a red pick up truck slowly pulled up behind them. Mendez and Rios, who were inside the truck, began verbally harassing the two. As Kristi and Sal tried to run away, one of the men pulled out a semi-automatic assault rifle and began shooting at the four friends.
Kristi's friends survived with minor injuries, but Kristi had taken a direct hit and died at the scene. Six days later, Jose Rios and Jorge Mendez were both charged with first degree murder, and they were believed to have fled to Mexico. Authorities found that the assault rifle that was used to kill Kristi was legally bought by Mendez four weeks before the murder.
Authorities now believe that Jose Rios was responsible another murder. In March of 1996, an uncle of Jorge Mendez was gunned down at an intersection in Houston, just two days after he told the two men to turn themselves in. He said that if they did not turn himself in, he would call the police. Rios later told several people that he was responsible for the uncle's murder. The suspects are considered armed and dangerous and a $12,000 reward is being offered in the case.
Extra Notes: This case first aired on the September 6, 1996 episode of Unsolved Mysteries. Rios was also profiled on America’s Most Wanted.
Some sources have the victim's first name spelled "Kristie".
Results: Unresolved. In August of 2000, Jorge Mendez was arrested in Mexico on unrelated charges. Authorities have requested that he be extradited back to the United States to stand trial for Kristi's murder. However, Mexican officials have not agreed to extradite him because of the murder charges. It is unknown if and when Mendez will face trial for Kristi's murder.
Jose Rios, however, remains at large; he is 5'7, 130 pounds, was born on July 5, 1976, and would now be 41 years old. Investigators believe that he now lives in Mexico, but has traveled back to Houston to visit relatives. He has numerous tattoos, including two teardrops under his left eye, a knife sticking into a skull on his right forearm, and the outline of a cross on his left-middle finger.
- Mendez and Rios at Unsolved Archive
- Fan thread on Jose Rios
- Suspect found in '95 'thrill-kill'
- Jailed shooting suspect awaits extradition
- Search for killer continues
- Memorial page for Kristi Martin with descriptions of her killers