Prosecutors seek death penalty against suspect accused of murders

Leonardo Santiago

Prosecutors say they plan to seek the death penalty for a man charged with the murders of two men.

Phoenix Police say Bernardo Pantaleon was found dead in a desert area near Mountain View Park last November.

Investigators said Pantaleon was found near a tree, and appeared to have been shot multiple times.

"[The victim's] body was mutilated, postmortem, with a sharp-edged object," court documents read.

Pantaleon's family reportedly received photos of his mutilated body.

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Four men were arrested in connection to Pantaleon's death, including 21-year-old Leonardo Santiago.

Santiago allegedly confessed to killing Pantaleon because he made an "unwanted advance."

The Maricopa County Attorney's Office says they are not seeking the death penalty against the three other suspects.

Santiago is also accused of killing 20-year-old Osvaldo Hernandez Castillo, who was found shot to death inside a car near 23rd and Dunlap Avenues in March 2023.

According to court documents, Santiago admitted to the shooting, saying he lured the victim with the promise of sex, but killed him in order to be recognized by his gang.

Santiago's trial is set for March 2026.