Behind bars, at last

Posted: September 22, 2013

SANTIAGO PEDROSO had one hell of a run.

He fled Philadelphia, then fled the country after police accused him of walking up to Dolores Alvarez inside Germantown Hathaway Inn on June 21, 1992, and firing four bullets into the 41-year-old woman's head, snuffing out her life, while other restaurant patrons watched in pure horror.

"We've tracked him all over the world," a frustrated homicide investigator told the Daily News in 1996. "We had him in Spain, in Mexico City."

Pedroso, 71, ended up lasting a full 21 years on the lam. His run finally ended Sept. 9, the FBI said yesterday, when he was arrested by the Philippine Bureau of Immigration outside of the U.S. Embassy in Manila.

He was deported to the U.S. earlier this week. FBI agents took him into custody in Los Angeles, and brought him to Philly on Thursday morning.

The District Attorney's Office said yesterday that Pedroso had already been arraigned and will be held without bail.

Pedroso was once a "spirtualist" who operated a religious-goods shop called Botanica Olodu in Hunting Park.

Police previously said he flew into a jealous rage after seeing Alvarez walk into the Hathaway Inn with his ex-wife, Maria Gomez.

The Inquirer reported shortly after the shocking murder that friends believed Alvarez and Gomez were starting a life together.

Pedroso had just finished having dinner with his then-17-year-old daughter, Raquel, who screamed, "Pop, no, Pop, no!" while he fired at Alvarez, the paper reported.

In 1995, the Daily News reported that a human skull was found in Pedroso's home on Chelten Avenue near Wissahickon, but its connection to Pedroso was unclear.

Bizarre symbols, including a pair of demonic figures, also were found on the walls inside his house. The symbols were believed to have been the work of a satanic cult of black-magic practitioners, police said.

On Twitter: @dgambacorta

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