Benito Enriquez, a father of two and a nurse from Federal Way, died after being assaulted a few blocks from CenturyLink Field after a country-music show. Seattle police are looking for a possible suspect.
After country star Jason Aldean left the stage at CenturyLink Field on Saturday night, Benito “Benny” Enriquez told his friends he was going to grab some T-shirts for his daughters.
Enriquez, 30, and his companions made plans to meet at their cars parked at a nearby construction site, recalled his friend Joey Smith. When the men arrived at the site they saw police cars and an ambulance but no sign of Enriquez.
The three men camped out in the site’s construction trailer and kept calling Enriquez’s phone. Smith said he had a bad feeling.
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“We were calling him frantically, every couple of minutes,” Smith said.
Eventually, the men were notified by Enriquez’s girlfriend that a “John Doe” was at Harborview Medical Center, Smith said. The man, later identified as Enriquez, died from a severe beating, Seattle police said.
Seattle police say the man who died at Harborview was involved in a fight with another man near Fifth Avenue South and South Weller Street around 9 p.m. that night.
On Sunday, Seattle police released photos and surveillance video of a possible suspect, as well as a woman he was believed to be with. Department spokesman Drew Fowler said the man is in his 20s, about 6 feet tall, with a medium to stocky build.
He is seen on the video wearing a black and white “trucker” style baseball cap, a white V-neck T-shirt and black shorts.
The woman seen in the video footage is also in her 20s and about 5 feet 8 inches. She is possibly pregnant, Fowler said. The woman is seen in the video with straight blonde hair, wearing a red, pink and white patterned dress and carrying a purse.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Seattle Police Department homicide tip-line at 206-233-5000.
After looking at photos of the two, Smith said he has no idea who they are. Smith said he didn’t see the two at the show, but it wouldn‘t be unusual for the outgoing Enriquez to strike up a conversation with strangers.
“He was a great guy. He’d do anything for you,” Smith said. “My kids are the exact same age as his kids and those kids are like sisters.”
Smith said Enriquez, who lived in Federal Way, worked as a nurse to mentally ill patients.
Bailey Enriquez, the slain man’s estranged wife, said she’s struggling to tell the couple’s two daughters, ages 8 and 6, what happened to their father.
“He was a wonderful father to our children and he will be truly missed,” Bailey Enriquez said by text message on Monday.
Bailey Enriquez said she was too distraught to talk at length on Monday and asked Smith to speak on her behalf.
Smith added that after knowing Enriquez 25 years, he feels “it’s like a brother I’ve lost.”