After searching, family finds cousins dead

The Saucedas use cell phone records to locate the two men who disappeared.

Published November 28, 2005

RUSKIN - The family knew something was wrong when cousins Edward and Alexander Sauceda didn't return home after a night out in Ybor City on Nov. 19.

All week, relatives posted fliers. They asked authorities to search thoroughly. Edward Sauceda, 25, lived in Sarasota. Alexander, 24, lived in Bradenton.

On Saturday, a week later, relatives found their bodies inside an overturned Chervolet Impala in the trees near the Interstate 75 exit to Sun City Center.

"What really hurt us is that we had to go out there," said Edward's brother, Daniel Sauceda Jr., 28, who thought that the Hispanic family wasn't treated with respect. "We weren't getting enough help."

Ultimately, relatives located the car through Sprint cell phone records. These identified the area from which Edward Sauceda made his last call shortly before 5 a.m. Nov. 20.

With the cell records, it took the family three hours to find the car. Its blinker still was on, Daniel Sauceda said.

The cousins inside weren't wearing seat belts, investigators with Florida Highway Patrol reported. The Impala left the road while driving on the eastbound exit ramp to State Road 674. The car spun, flipped and struck a tree.

Authorities have not determined what caused the crash, or the exact time that it occurred.

"We don't know what they were doing," said Lt. A. Pugh of the Florida Highway Patrol.

Alexander Sauceda had a wife and three children, according to his cousin, Daniel. Edward Sauceda's survivors include his father, brother and four sisters.

--Letitia Stein can be reached at 813 661-2443 or lstein@sptimes.com