EL PASO, Texas — A Texas man is accused of bludgeoning to death his wife’s boyfriend, a Southwest Airlines employee, last month as the man finished his shift at the El Paso International Airport.
Bernard Walter Christmann, 50, of El Paso, is charged with murder in the Nov. 19 homicide of 49-year-old Juan Anzaldo. Christmann was arrested Friday night and booked into the El Paso County Jail.
El Paso police investigators initially believed the killing might have been the result of a robbery. Early reports also indicated that Anzaldo, who was found dead in an employee parking lot, had possibly been shot.
Authorities soon learned neither was the case.
“Anzaldo was killed as he was standing by his car at the airport parking lot after his work shift at the airport,” a police statement read. “The cause of death was blunt force trauma to his head.”
The slaying, which took place shortly before 10 p.m. Nov. 19, had no impact on airport operations but drew concern from the public about safety at the facility. Detectives determined within days, however, that the crime was not random and there was no immediate danger to airport visitors.
“The investigation revealed that Anzaldo was in a dating relationship with Christmann’s wife,” police officials said.
No additional details of the crime were made public.
According to KVIA in El Paso, Anzaldo was part of Southwest Airlines’ ground crew at the airport.
“This is a heartbreaking, tragic loss for the Southwest team, and we extend deepest sympathies to our colleague’s family, loved ones and their extended Southwest family,” airline officials said in a statement obtained by the news station. “Southwest leadership is focused on supporting our employees while we offer our full support to the active investigation being conducted by local law enforcement.”
Christmann is being held in lieu of bail set at $1.25 million.
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