LEE COUNTY, FL -
New details about the Cape Coral teen accused of killing a homeless man are coming to light.
Yoel Munoz, 13, is in jail, and on Monday his friends and family came to his defense, and say that he is not a killer.
Before a judge on Monday Munoz stood silently, while accused of killing a homeless man, 51-year-old Thomas Bergstrom,
"I think what happened is he was with the wrong people, he was hanging out with the wrong people at the wrong time," said Lazaro Ordonez, who is Munoz's older brother.
Ordonez said he does not believe his brother was the one who stabbed Bergstrom to death. "He's innocent," he said.
Bergstrom was found inside a makeshift camp where he lived less than a mile from the Munoz home - located off Pine Island Road and Santa Barbara Boulevard.
Based on the Police report, it was a bloody scene and Bergstrom suffered several stab wounds to his upper torso, right hand and arm while seated in a recliner. He then fell forward and was found partially outside the doorway.
A neighbor discovered his body in a pool of blood, and according to a police report there is strong evidence linking Munoz to the slaying. The bloody knife found at the scene, matches a knife of the same brand that investigators found at the teen's home. A hockey mask was also found on a dirt path leading away from the crime scene, which was covered in writings matching writing found in his bedroom.
The teen's shoes were found bloody, in a bag, in his garage.
Munoz's parents, who primarily speak Spanish, are confident that once the police investigation is complete, their son's name will be cleared.
"He's not a violent child, he a homebody, he's not a child who's on the streets, he's well educated, and has a good heart," said Mayling Suarez, Munoz's mother.
When asked about Munoz's recent attempt to runaway from home, the family declined to comment.
When asked if the teen was affiliated with a gang, Ordonez said: "I would not be able to answer at this time, I don't know they're investigating that."
In the runaway report, Munoz's mother told detectives her son was on meds for behavioral issues. According to that report, Munoz threatened drug use and association with Harlem Lake Boyz, a group known for their promotion of violence.
In an unrelated interview, we spoke earlier to Munoz during a visit to Fort Myers Beach. At that time he was with two girls - the Alvarez sisters - who call Munoz their cousin and defended him on Monday.
Meanwhile, neighbors are left shocked by the killing.
"I've never seen that young man back here before. Why would he come back in here and do something so brutal and gruesome?" said Danny Brower, neighbor.
Cape Coral police say no on else is involved in the crime and that the incident is not gang-related.
The judge found probable cause to keep the accused teenager in secured detention for 21 days. Munoz is being held without bond on a charge of homicide (murder dangerous depraved without premeditation), and has a Aug. 21 court date, according to Lee County Jail records.
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