ICE Detainee Gets Life In Prison For 2017 Murder At Bear Night Club

Elder Saavedra

The 2017 murder of a 23-year-old man has resulted in life in prison for a 26-year-old New Castle man.

At around 1:28 a.m. Saturday, March 26, 2017, Delaware State Police were called to 2000 Firedancer Lane in Bear,  near the Nuevo Rodeo, for reports that a pedestrian had been struck in the parking lot.

When Troopers arrived they learned that the pedestrian was walking in the parking lot when a driver of a Cadillac Escalade struck the pedestrian. Police later identify Elder Saavedra, then 24, as the driver of the Escalade.

During the investigation, troopers learned that an altercation had occurred inside the El Nuevo Rodeo Restaurant involving several individuals. Following the altercation, Lester Mateo got into the SUV in the parking lot of the business. He drove the vehicle a short distance in the parking lot before getting out.  It was then that Elder Saavedra entered the Escalade and ran into Mateo, pinning him against a second vehicle which was parked in the lot. Saavedra exited the vehicle and fled the parking lot on foot.

Lester Mateo was removed from the scene and transported to the Christiana Medical Center where he was subsequently pronounced dead.

On Tuesday, May 23, 2017, Delaware State Police detectives obtained an arrest warrant charging Elder Saavedra, 24, with Murder 1st Degree.

Saavedra, who had been picked up and was incarcerated in Pennsylvania due to a prior detainer issued by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), was formally charged after he was extradited back to Delaware.


In September 2018, a Superior Court jury found Saavedra guilty of Murder First Degree and Possession of a Deadly Weapon During the Commission of a Felony.

On Friday prosecutors announced that a judge sentenced Saavedra to life in prison for murder, plus 10 years for the weapons charge.


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