NASHVILLE – A joint investigation by Special Agents with the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation has resulted in the indictment of three individuals who are charged in the murder of a Tennessee man whose body was found in Georgia.
At the request of 20th District Attorney General Glenn Funk, on March 6, 2017, TBI Special Agents joined Agents with the GBI in investigating the death of Luis Antonio Lopez (DOB 09/13/1990) of La Vergne. On January 10, 2017, GBI began an investigation after the victim’s partially-burned body was discovered in a wooded area near Dalton, GA. During the course of the investigation, Agents determined Mr. Lopez had been murdered in Davidson County, TN. The investigation revealed that three friends of the victim, Hector Ruiz and Kevin Palacio of Antioch, and Roberto Viera-Aybar of La Vergne, were the individuals responsible for his murder and the disposal of his body.
On March 19th, the Davidson County Grand Jury returned indictments charging Hector J. Ruiz (DOB 01/15/1988), Kevin Isaza Palacio (DOB 03/09/1993), and Roberto Josue Viera-Aybar (DOB 07/14/1993) each with one count of First Degree Murder. On March 25th, Ruiz (pictured below) was served in the Davidson County Jail, where he has been incarcerated on unrelated charges. His bond was set at $500,000. Palacio and Viera-Aybar are currently in a Georgia jail after being arrested on charges related to this case. Both have holds placed on them pending their extradition to Nashville.