What Does Juan Know? Lacey Gaines Boyfriend Still Quiet After 2 Years

Lacey Gaines and Juan Valadez. Juan found Lacey dead in their apartment.

It was December 7, 2009 when Juan Valadez entered his and his girlfriend Lacey Gaines apartment. There, he found the woman he supposedly loved dead…murdered in cold blood. He couldn’t speak English so he had a female companion call 911 and asked the Justice, Illinois Police Department for help. It was too late. Lacey was dead, killed in a seedy apartment complex well-known for crime and even reports of illicit activity in the management and maintainance areas. Yet it’s been 2 years. And still Juan Valadez won’t come forward and talk about what he knows of that day. More importantly, what activities may have led up to that day.

Juan, if you are a man, it’s been too long. Step up and tell the world what you know.

Juan, si usted es un hombre, que ha pasado mucho tiempo. Un paso adelante y decirle al mundo lo que sabes.


Posted on December 24, 2011, in Cold Cases, Crime, Lacey Gaines, Murder and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 12 Comments.

  1. Just speculation based on available online information.

    Supposedly Juan found Lacey dead bled out on floor in living room, not far from their front door. There is a woman with him, who is she? This area is highly populated with Hispanics. Would he really need a woman to speak English or is that just his story? Were the detectives suspicious of this?

    Juan had a key and could have been waiting for Lacey to come home, with or without others. no one would think it suspicious if they saw him enter his own apartment. Lacey could have been surprised by her killers when she came through her door. They had what they needed a 10″knife and cord from the apartment.

    Was baby Conor not there based on Lacey telling her Grandmother, she and Juan were fighting?

    Lacey was working at the Sunset apt complex as a manager and the men would flirt and harass her. Juan was also a maintenance man, for a sister complex. He reportedly would become angry and very jealous.

    Allegedly Juan had a crazy ex-girlfriend who came around.The girl was related to one of Juan’s sisters husband. His niece, she lived on Fairfield with Juan’s sisters Anna and Vero. Lacey and Juan filed a police report – Daniel had threatened their lives, the lives of Juan’s sister’s and their children.

    A few friends reported a rumor that Lacey and Juan may have been married by a justice of the peace and the Dr visit could have been because Lacey was pregnant. (There was no confirmation of this pregnancy, it is only hearsay) Could Daniel have feared he may lose his son if Lacey began a new life and family with another man?

    REGELIO SANCHEZ aka Rogelio Alvarado-Sanchez aka Daniel Sanchez’s mother Abigail Sanchez reportedly told Lacey there was a Bond Forfeiture Warrant out for his arrest for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.Daniel supposedly tried to shoot at someone in Schaumberg, IL, IL approx 4 1/2 yrs ago.(2004) Believed possible victim was boyfriend of Daniel’s ex-wife Sabrina, who also had a daughter Litzy with Daniel.

    Lacey was served with a summons for Case Type: PET TO ESTABLISH PARENTAGE (NON-IV-D) Case # 2009D679047 Filing Date: 3/18/2009 Court Date: 5/14/2009 Court Time: 0900. In the petition Daniel reportedly admits having sex with Lacey while she was under the age of legal consent. He filed this petition PRO-SE in the Cook County, 6th District Court in Markham, IL. The case was put off call in Sept. Why?

    According to friends, Lacey was very close to James Chiagkouris aka Jimmy Mantas . Reportedly he knew all about all the abuse by Daniel and took her to the hospital and helped her. Allegedly a fight ensued when Jimmy forgot to pay longtime girlfriend Rosa Esparsa’s bills but paid Lacey’s instead. After which Rosa was angry with Lacey. Reportedly Jimmy lived close to Lacey?

    Why did Jimmy Chiagkouris act so oddly after her murder? Supposedly firing many of the girls close to Lacey. Putting up her obituary for one day then removing the next and reportedly instructs all employees. No talking about Lacey. Why did he reportedly avoid the police when they came to KIndsberry Waffle House?

    Why did James Pluta the reporter who spoke to Jimmy comment he want to speak to you and you haven’t written if he has? Did someone stop him?

    I read a comment by Wesley Clark:
    “The comments about the apartments written by “anonymous” on 9/19/2009? I found interesting the writer complained about the lack of security, drugs, gangs, constant break ins, and added, “…no one else but the maintenance they have keys to everything and every door in the building…” It was interesting that the writer felt the need to add that. They mentioned break ins but then the fact maintenance has keys? Why? I think that is odd and if it was written by the suspect, it could indicate a plan or preparation to the commit the murder and to leave a bogus suspect trail to divert the investigation. No force was used for the “break-in” at the murder scene, right? Also, this was written in mid September…I think I read that in September the baby’s father also stopped pursuing the parentage through the courts? If that’s the case the timing is interesting and maybe he decided to pursue another path to eliminate his problem? Of course, I have just read some things online and not the case reports, evidence, interviews etc, so this is only a guess on my part and just another avenue to pursue. It looks like the letter was typed on a message board of some sort, so the computer forensics should be able to be traced if they get a search warrant (or consent) for a suspects computer.”

    This sounded like a good suggestion. Why haven’t the police pursued? Why are they turning away all help offered in Illinois and other?

    I hope this Christmas Season there would be someone who’s conscience is moved, to tell what they know. As everyone is celebrating maybe they will remember Lacey and her son Conor who will soon be 3. A sweet 3 yr old needs his mother.

    Police reportedly told Lacey’s Uncle they felt Lacey was killed by a “stone cold killer.”

    Why was Lacey strangle and her throat slit? Throats are often metaphors for communication. A slit throat silenced Lacey now she can’t talk. Lacey being strangling would have “choked” her efforts to be heard or understood while alive. Strangling Lacey may show a desire either to quiet, stifle or make her “choke” on her own words.

    Who would do this? And want her to be found?

    Why is Lacey’s executioner still free?

    • I can answer one of your questions. I did try calling Jim Pluta a couple of times but got his voice mail. I didn’t leave a message but I did write him an email asking for a good time to talk. Still waiting on a reply.

  2. Jimmy Chiagkouris lives just 6 miles away from Lacey’s Apt. He does not live with Rosa.

    Chris reportedly fired Lacey from Kingsberry also knew what was going on between Jimmy and Lacey. He also knew how Jimmy would jam up Lacey’s station and leave the rest of girls stations open so only Lacey was making good money. Chris got irritated with that. Jimmy would allow Lacey to call off frequently and give her someone else shift for that week to make it up for her. Because of all the privileges Lacey had she gotten to the point where she acted like she ran that place. A lot of the girls got irritated with that, but kept it to themselves.

    Lacey said Jimmy helped pay her bills when she needed it and she babysat his son a few times. His girlfriend Rosa didnt care for Lacey very much and Lacey reportedly said she would get pissed when she was withJimmy. Reportedly JImmy was always there for Lacey. Friends found it very weird that he would cling onto Lacey like he did.

    Lacey was seen coming into the Kingsberry Restaurant the Weds and Fri before her murder. She confided in a friend she thought she was pregnant. She was seen crying and upset talking to her manager James Chiagkouris. Yet Jimmy reportedly said he hadn’t seen her, to the police anytime recent but he did

    After Lacey’s death reportedly Jimmy began to fire the girls who were close to Lacey. Keeping on only those who were new or older and not close to Lacey.

    Rosa lives in Blue Island and supposedly has many gang friends (Latin Kings). Rosa has been with Jimmy for 10 yrs. She is younger than Jimmy.

    Jimmy and Lacey went to many Chicago Fire soccer games together and were together a lot. There are many photos of Lacey with the Chicago Fire Players. It is reported Jimmy took the photos.

    After Lacey was murdered Rosa told many people Juan had a secret life and had a wife and baby. Rosa reportedly told friends that she knew Juan did it because Lacey said she was pregnant and Juan told her to abort it.

    Juan allegedly had a girlfriend in the Apts where they lived. Lacey was upset about and wanted to go back home, this was approximately 2 to 4 weeks prior to her murder.

  3. Rosa M Esparza aka Rosa V Esparza aka Rosa M Vazquez now lives in Midlothian, IL

  4. After 2 years please write or call the following offices and ask for the active investigation of the case of Lacey Claire Gaines Murder Case #09-06670 Justice, IL

    “Det Malloy on Jan 14th said they does not have enough evidence to make a case but they think they know who committed the murder. He has a lot of evidence in evidence room coming in from lab. They have video footage from a business near by and they took clothing from all the suspects.

    On February 8, 2010 AMW Called and spoke to Det Plotke he indicated then he was waiting on DNA evidence to come back from the lab and other evidence. When asked if there was anyway we could ask the evidence be pushed through the system. He responded they’ll have to wait until evidence comes back.”

    The South Suburban Major Crimes Task Force (SSMCTF) unit investigates major crimes that consist of homicides, kidnappings, and other forcible felonies. The unit consists of law enforcement officers from local, county, state, and federal agencies. http://www.ssmctf.org

    The lead Det Plotke a 12 year veteran of the Police Department of the Village of Justice. Justice with a population of 12,193 with 4,772 housing units; a land area land area of 2.91 sq. miles. Salary: $48,969 – $62,505 Sworn Officers: 28

    The lead detective is Det R. Plotke 708-458-2191 rplotke@justicepolice-il.org, also Det Joe Malloy 708-458-2194 Jmalloy@justicepolice-il.org
    Website: http://villageofjustice.org

    Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart

    Det Jim Davis

    Gerry Murillo, Commander at Willow Springs Police (second on the scene)
    Phone: 708-467-3700
    Fax: 708-467-3710
    Website: http://www.willowsprings-il.gov

    John Brassil (New Illinois) Chief, Criminal Prosecutions Bureau Office of the Cook County State’s Attorney (took over for Fabio Valentini Supervisor, Felony Review Unit , Office Of The Cook County State’s Attorney)

    Anita Alvarez State’s Attorney Office

    Lisa Madigan
    Illinois Attorney General’s Office
    Jessica O’Leary

    Aaron Schrock 18th District IL member of Victim;s Right Caucus
    Washington, DC Office
    509 Cannon House Office Building
    Washington, D.C. 20515
    T: 202.225.6201 F: 202.225.9249
    Staffer: Mark Roman

  5. Will the real Rosa please stand up?

    This post talks about Lacey’s boyfriend Juan. Where is he? Why hasn’t he spoken out about Lacey’s death? He’s not the only one keeping quiet.

    Lacey’s old boss and reportedly one of her best friends, one who gave her financial and emotional support has been unusually quiet, As has Jimmy’s old girlfriend Rosa.

    Aka Rosey Betancourt (plus many other numerous alias’) reportedly shared with friends Juan Valadez lead a double life. How did she know this?

    Lacey frequently confided in James Chiagkouris (he is also Rosa and her 12 year old son’s benefactor) and did Jimmy in turn share what Lacey told him with Rosa?

    Was Rosa afraid she would lose Jimmy’s support to a younger and prettier woman? Jimmy allegedly forgot to pay rosa’s and paid Lacey’s causing a public argument at the restaurant.

    Another of Rosa’s alias’ is Awawdeh, this is the last name of her youngest 12 yr old son’s father (age 32).

    Rosa’s FB page (Rosey Betancourt) says she graduated from Thornridge High School in 1988 making her about age 42, she knows Greek (Jimmy Chiagkouris is Greek), Spanish (Esparaza), and Arabic (Awawdeh) and she is originally from Sauk Village, Illinois.

    https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002327203650 Rosa is pictured with her older son “Joe” also spoken about in this blog – with possible gang ties.

    Her son’s father supposedly also lives in Midlothian – of Arab descent has photos of a trip to the UAE just a few weeks after Lacey’s death.

    A FB commenter remarked maybe Lacey’s brutal murder was some sort of an honor killing. She expressed she feels this murder may have been orchestrated by a jealous woman.

    I agree with the above comment, by Wesley Clark, there does seems to be a strong effort to “leave a bogus suspect trail to divert the investigation.”

    According to postings this Rosa has many connections….good and bad.

    What is it that Rosa and Jimmy are hiding from? Why not do more to help find Lacey’s killer? Why did Jimmy act so oddly after her murder?

    I pray the legal authorities are looking at all avenues. I encourage all to write and ask for a renewed effort for justice on behalf of Lacey Gaines.

    This is such a sad mystery – who killed Lacey Gaines so viciously and why? Thank you for not letting her be forgotten.

  6. FYI looks like Mounes Sami Awawdeh now lives in Jordan, he use to live in Midlothian (2000). Deported? Maybe reason Rosa needs support from James or via other means. She certainly does seem to have many connections.

  7. Interesting photo albums:

    Fire Season Kickoff Luncheon w/ James Chiagkouris

    Friends and aquaintences of Lacey’s near time of her murder

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