BOZEMAN - The Gallatin County Sheriff's Coroner has identified 19-year old Lesman Joan Escobar-Andara as the person who died after being stabbed on Thursday, July 7, 2022.
Lesman had been stabbed repeatedly and succumbed to his injuries. The cause of death was determined to be sharp force injuries to the chest and the manner was ruled a homicide.
The Sheriff's Office said in a news release: "Our deepest condolences go to the family and friends of Lesman Joan Escobar-Andara."
Francisco Padilla-Canales, 41 years old, has been arrested in connection with the stabbing; he appeared in Gallatin County Justice Court on Thursday and bail was set at $1 million dollars.
According to charging documents, dispatchers received a 911 call at 12:49 a.m. but the caller hung up. Another 911 call was received at 12:51 from the same number, with the caller stating that a man had stabbed himself in the chest.
Patrol officers responded and found a man with several stab wounds to his chest and another man attempting CPR on the victim. A woman was also at the residence at Brenden Street in Bozeman.
A folding Dewalt knife was reportedly recovered by officers near the victim. The suspect - later identified as Francisco Padilla-Canales - and the woman at the scene were taken to the Gallatin County Law & Justice Center to be interviewed by detectives.
The woman said that she was romantically involved with the victim and married to Padilla-Canales.
She reportedly told detectives she was employed as a house cleaner and had been cleaning the vacation rental and allowing the victim to stay at the rental where the stabbing happened.
The woman also told detectives that a few days prior to the stabbing, the victim had found a GPS tracking device on her vehicle, which she suspected Padilla-Canales of placing there.
According to charging documents, the woman told detectives that she and the victim were in a bedroom watching TV early in the morning of July 7 when Padilla-Canales entered the bedroom, confronted the two, and reportedly made a punching motion toward the victim’s upper torso.
The woman ran out of the room in fear, but Padilla-Canales reportedly caught her and brandished a firearm. The woman told detectives she was in fear for her safety and was afraid she would be killed.
When detectives interviewed Padilla-Canales, he reportedly admitted to placing the GPS tracker on the woman’s vehicle. He also reportedly admitted to entering the house through the back door and stabbing the victim with a Dewalt folding knife in the chest. He said he decided to tell law enforcement the victim had attempted suicide, placing the knife near the victim.
The homeowners were notified and told detectives the house was a vacation rental but the house was not currently being rented and no one should be in the house, as the next booking wasn’t until later in the week.
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