Two suspects arrested in connection with Feb. 21 shooting at L’Estancia apartments on Coronado Drive

Sheriff’s Office detectives say 20-year-old man and his 16-year-old girlfriend lured victim to meeting on pretext of narcotics sale

Kevin A. Jimenez. Photo courtesy Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office

A 20-year-old man and his 16-year-old girlfriend have been arrested in connection with a Feb. 21 shooting outside a building in the L’Estancia apartment complex located on Coronado Drive in Sarasota, the Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office has reported.

Both Kevin Alejandro Jimenez of 3211 Eighth St. E. in Bradenton and Magaly Cortes of 1027 Marlin Lakes in Sarasota were charged with Murder while Engaged in a Robbery and Robbery with a Firearm, their probable cause affidavits say.

The narrative in those affidavits alleges that the couple used the ruse of a narcotics transaction to lure the victim out of his apartment, so Jimenez could confront him over Jimenez’s feeling “disrespected because the victim was communicating with [Cortes] on social media.”

The 20-year-old male victim in the case, who suffered a gunshot wound to the face, was transported to Sarasota Memorial Hospital, where he died as a result of his injuries, the affidavits add.

The victim’s family opted into Marsy’s Law provisions to keep him from being identified in the law enforcement reports released to the public, Sheriff’s Office Community Affairs Director Kaitlyn R. Perez reported last week.

The Sheriff’s Office’s Corrections Divisions noted on Feb. 25 that Jimenez was being held without bond; his arraignment was set for April 1.

A Sheriff’s Office news release pointed out that, because of her age, Cortes was transferred to the Department of Juvenile Justice.

Both Jimenez and Cortes were born in Mexico, the affidavits note. Jimenez was listed in the affidavit as a permanent legal resident of the United States, whereas the affidavit for Cortes said her immigration status was “Unknown.”

Details of the incident

A map shows the location of 3401 Coronado Drive in Sarasota. Image from Google Maps

The shooting reportedly occurred just before 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 21, the affidavits say. A caller told a 911 dispatcher that a male had been shot at 3401 Coronado Drive, the affidavits note.

Detectives conducted multiple interviews with family members and friends of the victim, and the contents of the victim’s cell phone were reviewed, the affidavits continue. “Subpoenas were issued to various social media platforms for account holder information and content for the last person(s) to have communicated with the victim, the affidavits add.

“One of the last people to have communicated with the victim,” on Instagram, was identified as Magaly, the affidavits point out. “In the messages related to the purchase of narcotics, Cortes provided the victim a cell phone number,” which belonged to Jimenez, the affidavits note.

Magaly Cortes. Photo courtesy Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office

On Feb. 24, the affidavits continue, law enforcement officers were able to locate Magaly and Jimenez in a vehicle, so they conducted a traffic stop. Both defendants were transported to the Sheriff’s Office Headquarters on Cattleridge Boulevard for interviews, the affidavits say.

“Magaly admitted to going with her boyfriend, Kevin Jimenez, to Sarasota to commit a robbery,” the affidavits point out.

On their way to Sarasota, the affidavits continue, Magaly said they stopped at a house where one of Jimenez’s “homeboys” lives, where they “picked up a black and gold pistol. When they arrived [at the victim’s apartment complex],” the affidavits add, Magaly moved into the driver’s seat of their vehicle “so the victim would only see her.”

Jimenez was hiding in the back seat, the affidavits note.

When the victim spoke to Cortes, the affidavits indicate, Jimenez “sat up … [and] fired one shot,” which struck the victim in the face. Then Jimenez opened the door of the vehicle, “took the victim’s pistol and left,” the affidavits add.

During an interview with law enforcement officers, the affidavits say, “Jimenez admitted to being angry because the victim was communicating with his girlfriend. Jimenez had Magaly message the victim on Instagram and set up a meeting to purchase narcotics,” the affidavits note.

“Jimenez stated he intended to confront the victim about disrespecting him,” the affidavits continue.

At the apartment complex, Jimenez told officers, the victim pulled out a gun and pointed it at him, the affidavits say. Therefore, Jimenez pulled out his gun and fired one round. Then Jimenez “took the victim’s gun and drove out of the apartment complex.”

This is one of the buildings in the L’Estancia apartment complex. Image from Google Maps

He added that he disposed of both pistols “somewhere along the roadway,” the affidavits say.

Prior charges against Jimenez

In a search of Sarasota and Manatee County records maintained by the clerks of court, The Sarasota News Leader learned that, on July 26, 2019, Jimenez was charged with Resisting/Obstructing an Officer without Violence and Burglary of an Unoccupied Structure.

Those counts followed an attempt by a Manatee County Sheriff’s Office deputy to stop a vehicle “that appeared to have illegal tint on the front driver and passenger windows,” as the Probable Cause Affidavit noted.

Jimenez and a second person ran from the vehicle after it “abruptly stopped,” the affidavit pointed out.

The burglary count in that case resulted from the fact Jimenez and the other person bypassed “two fences to gain access to the awning at the rear of [a] closed business,” which was identified as a daycare facility. Jimenez was in violation of his probation, the affidavit added.

At the time, the deputy had noted, Jimenez was on probation on a charge of Delinquent in Possession of a Firearm.

Jimenez was sentenced to 11 months and 29 days in jail as a result of the charges related to the 2019 incident, court records show.

This is a Bushmaster XM-15, which is the equivalent of an AR-15, based on details on the company’s website, plus ammunition clips, straight out of the box, the photographer says. Image by M4gery via Wikimedia Commons

In regard to the case linked to Jimenez’s being on probation, the News Leader found that on Oct. 6, 2018, Jimenez was a passenger in the front seat of a vehicle stopped by a Bradenton Police Department officer. When the officer approached the vehicle, the affidavit in that case said, the officer “could see in plain view the defendant holding between his legs a black Bushmaster AR15 with the selector switch on FIRE and magazine inserted. The magazine was later found to contain 21 live rounds of 5.56mm ammunition.”

When asked why he had possession of the firearm, the affidavit pointed out, Jimenez “had no answer …”

Jimenez also had marijuana in his possession, the affidavit pointed out, so he was charged with possession of not more than 20 grams of marijuana.

That incident occurred just before 11 p.m. on Oct. 6, 2018, the affidavit said.

Additionally, the officer noted that “[f]urther investigation” revealed that Jimenez “was adjudicated delinquent” on March 16, 2016, and he “had full knowledge of [that] status.”

Jimenez ended up entering a plea of “No contest” in that case, court records showed. He was placed on probation for 36 months on the charge involving the firearm, plus 12 months of probation, to be served concurrently with the firearm count, for the marijuana charge.