Pedro Bravo's roommate talks about murder suspect

Published On: Sep 29 2012 11:24:52 PM EDT
Updated On: Sep 30 2012 07:20:47 AM EDT

Pedro Bravo's roommate describes him as "quiet" and "nice." Bravo was charged with the murder of Christian Aguilar.

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -

Erik Skipper said Pedro Bravo was nice, quiet and kept to himself.

Skipper first met the man charged with the death of fellow University of Florida freshman Christian Aguilar, 18, six weeks ago when they began renting a room together on the Gainesville campus.

"He was a randomly assigned roommate. Good kid, nice kid, quiet kid. He was always friendly to us," Skipper said.

Skipper said he and his other roommate never noticed anything out of the ordinary about Bravo. Not even the night Aguilar disappeared.

"There wasn't anything he did that was suspicious before then, even the night of, because my roommate had witnessed him come in between the hours of 8 and 10 p.m. He came in fast and he left fast but it wasn't anything unusual for Pedro," Skipper told Channel 4's Hailey Winslow. "He said, 'Hello,' and he said 'Goodbye,' and that was really it."

Bravo's roommate said the fact that the man he shared a home with faces premeditated first-degree murder charges is definitely keeping him up at
night.

"Just to think that he could've been coming up the stairs after something like that. I would have had no idea," Skipper said.

Aguilar missing poster Gainesville police charged 18-year-old Bravo with Christian Aguilar's murder on Friday. Bravo had been arrested earlier in the week for depriving a victim of medical treatment.

Detectives told Channel 4 that they had enough cause to charge Bravo with murder because his statements about beating the teen were enough to assume Aguilar was dead.

A police report obtained by Channel 4 revealed Bravo "stated that he had punched the victim (Christian Aguilar) in the face with his fist and forced him to get out of his vehicle during the argument...He attacked the victim and beat the victim for ten to fifteen minutes...The def (Bravo) stated that he was unconscious on top of the victim punching him until the victim lost consciousness. The def stated that the victim was barely breathing and not moving, lying on his back, partially in water, at the time that the def left him."

Investigators said they found blood inside Bravo's blue Chevrolet Blazer and found Aguilar's backpack inside a suitcase in Bravo's apartment.

A judge denied bond for Bravo who appeared in court Saturday morning wearing a suicide prevention jacket.

Sgt. Art Forgey with the Alachua County Sheriff's Office said it is a preventative measure and that Bravo is being monitored to make sure he doesn't try to kill himself.

Sgt. Forgey said  it is a preventative measure because of statements Bravo made early on when he checked himself into a mental health facility.

Bravo is being kept in the Alachua County jail's medical unit under "close observation."

Gov. Rick Scott aided in the search with Aguilar's family Saturday but did not speak with the media afterwards.

Earlier Friday, police were asking for the public's help in determining where Bravo was over a 17-hour period, the time-frame Aguilar went missing. Investigators said they could not account for Bravo's whereabouts from 3 p.m. Sept. 20 to 8 a.m. Sept. 21.

Police said Bravo was at Best Buy at 3 p.m. Sept. 20, as seen on surveillance video with Aguilar, his childhood friend. Aguilar hasn't been seen since. Investigators said they also know where Bravo was in Gainesville at 8 a.m. the next day, but they didn't know where he was for the time in between.

Police released photos Friday of Bravo's 2004 Chevrolet Blazer. They noted the different front right wheel and tire, saying it is hopefully unique enough that someone remembers seeing the vehicle sometime within that time window.

Pedro Bravo's 2004 Chevrolet Blazer Bravo originally told police that he wrecked the Blazer about a week before Aguilar's disappearance, causing him to have to replace that rim, but police said none of that information could be confirmed.

Investigators were also asking for all business owners to check their outside surveillance video to see if that vehicle was seen on video. Police said they've reviewed a lot of video from Gainesville, but they were seeking areas outside of Gainesville due to the time window being so large.

They are encouraging property owners, residential or business, who may have lime rock roads on their property that are accessible to the general public to search those properties for any suspicious areas of ground that appear to have been disturbed.

"We had figured out some sort of a timeline for Christian on the last day he was seen. Now we're kind of switching gears to Pedro's timeline to figure out exactly where he was and see if we can kind of plug in some holes there," Gainesville police spokesman Ben Tobias said Friday morning.

Anyone who may have captured the SUV on video is asked to call police at 352-393-7670.

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