The sheriff’s office said an investigation was ongoing but did not provide details as to how the men escaped the facility near the county seat of Salinas, Calif., which holds more than 800 detainees.
“Our focus, and resources, are dedicated to locating and returning Fonseca and Salazar to custody,” the sheriff’s department said.
Fonseca was arrested last year along with his girlfriend, Alexandra Catherine Romayor, in connection with two killings just days apart in June 2018. Prosecutors allege that Fonseca approached Lorenzo Gomez Acosta, 37, and fatally shot Acosta while he was on talking on the phone with his wife, who was in Mexico. Three days later, a gunman believed to be Fonseca allegedly shot Ernesto Garcia Cruz, 27, who was sitting in a parked car, according to local news outlet, the Californian. Fonseca was later arrested at a traffic stop but fled before police eventually caught him.
Salazar was arrested last year in a fatal shooting in October 2017 that investigators believe was gang-related. Police said Salazar shot Jaime Martinez, 20, as Martinez was driving in a car with his girlfriend and his infant son. Martinez’s girlfriend, who was not identified, was also shot but survived. Martinez drove a short distance before crashing into a parking barricade and later died at a hospital, the Californian reported. The baby was uninjured.
According to court records, Salazar is expected to stand trial in January, while Fonseca’s trial is expected to start in March. Both men have pleaded not guilty in their respective cases.
On Sunday night, Monterey officials offered a $5,000 cash reward for any information that would help authorities catch the fugitives. The sheriff’s office advised members of the public to call 911 immediately if they see either suspect but warned against approaching them.
The sheriff’s office is expected to issue an update on the escape Monday afternoon.