(Phoenix, Ariz. – July 2, 2004) Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard announced today the conviction of Pedro Santana Cortes for the 1998 murder of Arturo Banuelos Escalante. Cortes shot and killed Escalante outside of the "El Torito" restaurant located at the Phoenix Metrocenter shopping mall.
On May 30, 1998, Cortes began to argue with the victim over a financial dispute. Cortes pulled a handgun and shot Escalante in the head, killing him. Cortes left the scene and fled to Mexico.