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Crime News

Man Tried Drowning Wife In Ocean Before Burying Her Alive On San Diego Beach, Authorities Allege

Jose Luis Mares III, 23, is accused of digging a shallow grave at Coronado Beach and burying his unresponsive wife there, after he tried to "throw" her in the Pacific Ocean. 

By Dorian Geiger
Husbands Who Killed Their Wives

A California woman was buried alive, allegedly by her husband, on a popular San Diego beach on Wednesday, police said.

Jose Luis Mares III is accused of entombing his unconscious spouse in a hole he dug in the sand after trying to drown her at Coronado Beach.

The 22-year-old victim, who dug herself out and escaped, was found by a passerby on a beachfront sidewalk around 9 p.m. that night. She was described by local police as “badly injured.” 

The unidentified woman told investigators she’d been strangled by her 23-year-old husband at the beach, who tried to “throw” her in the ocean, according to authorities.

“While they were on the beach, he began choking her to the point where she went unconscious,” Det. Ryan Brennan told KFMB-TV. “She was dragged by her hair to the water.”

Coronado Beach Murder Pd

Mares subsequently concealed his unresponsive wife beneath the sand, according to investigators. 

“[She] says her husband is trying to kill her, was choking her and was burying her in the sand,” a dispatcher was heard saying during the police call moments before authorities discovered her, 

Mares fled the scene but was later arrested after he was found hiding in the backyard of a home on Alameda Boulevard, police said.

His wife was transported to a San Diego hospital. 

“A couple of our first responding officers did a great job of kind of calming her down,” Brennan added.

Authorities didn’t specify what injuries she may have sustained, nor did they disclose her condition. Authorities didn’t release any further details surrounding the beachfront incident. 

Mares was charged with attempted murder, assault causing great bodily injury, domestic violence, false imprisonment, as well as a parole violation. He was booked into San Diego Central Jail and is being held without bail.

Mares was convicted of a 2017 carjacking and was also found guilty on a series of burglary charges in a separate case. He was paroled last September, KFMB-TV reported. 

His arraignment is scheduled for March 5 at 8 a.m., according to online jail records. It’s unclear if he’s retained legal representation.