Police have person of interest in Cape Coral death and missing person investigations

The Cape Coral Police Department found 35-year-old Kristine Ann Melton dead at her home along the 4800 block of Tudor Drive Monday.

During the investigation, detectives were able to develop a person of interest, who has been brought into custody. Their name has not been released, pending the active investigation. Questions still remain as to what happened inside the home that left Melton dead.

Also on Monday, the Cape Coral Police Department began searching for Diane Ruiz, who was reported as missing/endangered. The investigation into Ruiz’s disappearance suggests possible foul play.

At present, two separate teams of detectives, along with support personnel, are working each individual investigation. Preliminary information suggests that the same person of interest from the initial death investigation may be involved in the disappearance of Ruiz.

Neighbors of Melton have many questions to and shared their concerns with us.

“I think there’s probably somebody out there that’s got a funny mind,” neighbor John O’Keefe said.

And next-door neighbor Debbie McCabe said she is left wondering if a man she saw leave Melton’s home several nights ago is responsible.

“Heard a car drive up, and I heard her say, ‘Hi,'” McCabe said. “And then that was about it. That was the last time I heard her.”

CCPD says the person of interest is already facing charges from an unrelated case to Melton’s death or Ruiz’s disappearance.

Cape Coral police are asking the public to continue to assist with tips or anything that they may have seen, even if they are not sure of the significance of the tip.

Cape Coral Police Department stresses, the person of interest in these investigations is in custody on unrelated charges and there is currently no imminent threat to the public. Still, neighbors expressed their feelings of uncertainty, since a crime was committed so close to home.

“Awful for her family,” McCabe said. “And it makes me scared because I don’t know what happened.”

Anyone with information related to these two investigations can contact CCPD at 239-574-3223, or submit an anonymous tip on its website.

“She was happy-go-lucky, help anybody,” McCabe said. “She was a very nice person.”

Reporter:Justin Kase
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