The Cedar County Sheriff’s Department is asking the public’s help in identifying a car that left the scene of a homicide that occurred July 19 at a house south of Clarence, Iowa.
Milton Jermaine Cole Serrano Jr., 20, of Muscatine, is charged with first-degree murder in the stabbing death of Chantz Stevens, 19, of Wilton.
According to the arrest affidavit filed by Cedar County Sheriff’s Detective Austin Sorgenfrey, Serrano and Stevens were at a party at 936 Quincy Ave., in Clarence in rural Cedar County.
During the party, Serrano “keyed” a silver Toyota Camry causing $1,000 worth of damage to the vehicle.
A person at the party confronted Serrano, and Serrano was told multiple times to leave the party. A fight ensued but was broken up by others at the party.
Serrano then made a statement about a knife in his pocket, and he threatened to stab people at the scene.
A fight with Stevens then ensued, and when the two fell to the ground, Serrano took his knife and stabbed Stevens twice in the abdomen.
A person at the scene was able to disarm Serrano, after which he threatened to go to his vehicle and get a gun.
Serrano’s associates were then able to convince him to leave the area and go to Muscatine.
People at the party tried to help Stevens, but he died of his injuries.
Later that morning, Serrano posted on social media his account of being involved in a fight and stabbing someone. In the post Serrano had what appeared to be dried blood on him, and he was brandishing a knife that appeared to be the one described by witnesses at the scene. The knife also appeared to have dried blood on it.
Serrano was found at his home in Muscatine. In speaking with authorities he admitted to being involved in a fight and stabbing someone. He admitted the knife was in the house.
Serrano is being held in the Cedar County Jail on a $1 million cash-only bond.
First-degree murder is a Class A felony under Iowa law that carries a mandatory sentence of life in prison.
Anyone who can identify the vehicle in the images is asked to call the Cedar County Sheriff’s Department at 563-886-2121.
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