Accused murderer back in Lake County

TAVARES, Fla.—The man police believe is responsible for the murder of a Leesburg store owner was booked into the Lake County Jail Friday morning.

Alex Lopez, 25, is facing charges of premeditated murder, armed robbery and two other weapons offenses, and is being held on no bond.

Lopez was on the run for nearly a month, while Leesburg Police Department worked with state, federal and local agencies to track him down and finally located him at a motel in Kissimmee around 7 p.m. Wednesday, Leesburg Police Department Sgt. Shannon Walsh said. He was taken into custody by the FDLE/Orlando – Violent Crime Task Force.

“We located him using collaborative investigative measures,” Walsh told Inside Lake.

Lopez is accused of gunning down father of five, Raied “Ray” Shihadeh, 51, at Fast Stop Superette, 3702 Picciola Road, on May 30 during an armed robbery of the store. LPD will not confirm how much money was taken in the robbery, but a post created by Shihadeh’s wife, Monique, on a fundraising platform states it was less than $100. In the same post, Monique also stated her husband was killed on their daughter’s 16th birthday, making an already tragic situation much more heartbreaking.

Raied “Ray” Shihadeh. Photo courtesy of Monique Shihadeh

Inside Lake spoke with Monique by text Thursday and she said, “Our family is happy about his capture. We are preparing for this continuous and long journey that we will be on but praying for strength.”

Monique posted about her husband in numerous Facebook groups throughout the last few weeks asking for help locating Lopez and informing the public of a reward offered by Crimeline, in addition to money raised and added to the reward by her family.

Lopez grew up in Eustis and Sorrento, several sources have told Inside Lake. His next court date is scheduled for July 22.

Previous story: Leesburg murder suspect captured in Kissimmee – Inside Lake

Photos courtesy of Monique Shihadeh
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