Kent Police arrested a 25-year-old man on Tuesday, May 23 for investigation of killing his 25-year-old girlfriend May 13.
At about 8 a.m. on May 23, patrol officers were handling an unrelated call in the 300 block of Second Avenue South downtown when they spotted a suspect in the homicide of Maria Apodaca-Tift, of SeaTac, according to a May 24 Kent Police statement. The address is near the Kent Police station.
Officers contacted the man, the boyfriend of Apodaca-Tift, and took him into custody without incident, according to police. Police did not release a hometown for the man.
Apodaca-Tift died from left hemothorax due to blunt force injury of torso and the manner of death is homicide, according to the King County Medical Examiner’s Office.
Apodaca-Tift died following a dispute with a man at a 7-Eleven store, 22422 83rd Ave. S., according to Kent Police. Officers responded at about 1:39 a.m. May 13 in reference to a woman inside the store who needed medical aid. Apodaca-Tift died at the scene.
Kent’s Homicide and Violent Crimes Investigators quickly determined through interviews and evidence collection that the death was a homicide. They worked tirelessly for nine days to identify the suspect, develop probable cause, secure an arrest warrant from the court, and locate the suspect, according to police.
Once the warrant was secured, detectives worked with patrol officers to aggressively search for the man. The man is scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday, May 24 in King County with potential charges of second-degree murder with a domestic violence enhancement, according to police.
The death of Apodaca-Tift is the seventh homicide in 2023 in Kent. The city had 11 homicides in 2022, 14 in 2021, eight in 2020, four in 2019 and seven in 2018.
Domestic violence resources
• Local: dawnrising.org
• Regional crisis line: 866-427-4747 or crisisconnections.org/24-hour-crisis-line
• National DV Hotline/multiple languages: 800-799-7233