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FBI offers reward for fugitive in Sutter County homicide

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Efren Calderas-Meza is wanted for homicide on February 8, 1986, stabbing Eva Crist in an alley behind Oasis Tavern in Yuba City, California.

FBI Field Office in Sacramento

The The FBI’s Sacramento Field Office announced a reward on Wednesday up to $20,000 for information that led to the arrest of a man who stabbed his girlfriend to death more than 30 years ago in Sutter County.

Efren Calderas-Meza, the fugitive who is expected to be 68, will be featured on Wednesday night in an episode of “In pursuit with John Walsh” on the Investigation Discovery channel.

Calderas-Meza fatally stabbed Eva Crist, a 32-year-old mother of three, in the early hours of February 8, 1986, during a violent encounter in an alley behind a bar in Yuba City.

Crist met Calderas-Meza, who would become her recurring boyfriend, in Fresno before he got violent with her and the relationship ended, according to the show Investigation Discovery. Crist moved away from him for Yuba City. His now adult daughters told the show host that Calderas-Meza later reconciled with their mother and moved in with her in Yuba City, before he continued to terrorize their family.

Witnesses told police that Calderas-Meza stabbed Crist multiple times behind the Oasis Tavern located on Plumas Street in Yuba City, the The FBI said in a press release. Doctors took Crist to Rideout Hospital, where she died of her injuries.

Calderas-Meza fled prosecution shortly after the Yuba City Police Department obtained an arrest warrant on suspicion of homicide in Crist’s death. In February of this year, the FBI obtained a federal warrant against Calderas-Meza, suspected of illegal absconding, to avoid prosecution in the United States.

The FBI said the fugitive used multiple aliases, including Jorge Diaz Garcia, Roberto Alvidres and Pedro Meza; and he is known to provide false birth dates.

Investigators believe Calderas-Meza may have ties to Fresno, as well as Whatcom and Skagit counties in Washington and Zacatecas and Nayarit in Mexico.

Calderas-Meza was described as 5ft 4in tall with brown or black hair and brown eyes at the time of the fatal stab wound. He had a rosary tattoo and “ECM” or “EXCM” on the canvas of his left hand, as well as a tattoo with “Carmen” or “Carmon” in small text along a scar on his right breast.

The FBI released photos of Calderas-Meza before he disappeared and artist renderings of what he might look like today.

Investigators have asked anyone with information regarding the location of Calderas-Meza to call the nearest FBI office or the United States Embassy or Consulate. Anyone with information can also submit a tip online at tips.fbi.gov or call 1-800-225-5924 or the Yuba City Police Department at 530-822-2026.

This story was originally published September 14, 2022 1:14 p.m.

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Rosalio Ahumada writes breaking news stories related to crime and public safety for The Sacramento Bee. He is fluent in Spanish and has worked as a journalist in the Central Valley since 2004.