Man confesses to killing ex-landlord 15 years later
Tony Ray Peralta’s guilty conscience led him to call New Mexico authorities and confess
It wasn’t quite “The Tell-Tale Heart,” but a New Mexico man’s guilty conscience led to his arrest on suspicion of murder after admitting he killed his landlord in 2008.
Tony Ray Peralta, 37, of Roswell, apparently wracked with guilt, borrowed a cellphone while at a store and dialed 911 to tell police that he’d killed his landlord, William Blodgett, 15 years ago and where he’d buried the body, Fox News reported.
Police went to a former residence of Peralta’s and found bones, dentures and a boot beneath the floorboards of a detached room on the side of the house. The dentures were compared with Blodgett’s dental records and were a match, according to police.
Peralta told investigators he didn’t have a motive for killing Blodgett, who was 69 years old, the outlet reported citing court papers. He came forward because “his heart hurts” and that he was wracked with guilt over the killing, Fox reported.
“[H]e was a good man and that he didn’t deserve what I did,” Peralta told police, according to Fox. “I don’t have an excuse. A lot of people have an excuse, I don’t have one.”
Peralta is being represented by a public defender in the major crimes unit.
Blodgett’s family and girlfriend hadn’t heard from him since December 2008. Peralta, according to Fox, was initially a suspect in Blodgett’s disappearance following an alleged argument the two had. Blodgett also may have been trying to evict Peralta.
The investigation eventually went cold after police — finding no signs of foul play — interviewed people close with Blodgett as well as his neighbors. A cadaver dog was also deployed on the property, but did not find anything.
— Ted Glanzer