Cold case: Okaloosa deputies seek two men suspected of a 2005 murder. Two others arrested.

Northwest Florida Daily News/USA TODAY NETWORK

SHALIMAR — Sixteen years after a Fort Walton Beach man died following a home invasion robbery at his Monahan Drive apartment, two people are in custody for the murder and two others are being sought.

The Okaloosa County Sheriff's Office has charged 44-year-old Adrian Watson of Fort Walton Beach and 40-year-old Marcus Snowden of Daphne, Alabama, with murder in connection with the shooting death of Luis Magna Gonzalez on Sept. 12, 2005.

Active warrants for murder have been issued for 44-year-old Victor Stanton, the suspected trigger man, and 42-year-old Bennie Richardson, an OCSO release said.

Investigators say new witness testimony and information in the drug-related case was developed and led to a break in the cold case.

Victor Stanton

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About 1 a.m. Sept. 12, 2005, deputies responded to reports of shots fired in the 300 block of Monahan Drive, according to Watson's arrest report. Deputies found Gonzalez at his home with multiple gunshot wounds.

There were signs someone had kicked in the apartment's front door, and a search of the residence reportedly turned up cocaine, methamphetamine and such drug paraphernalia as baggies and scales.

Bennie Richardson

Investigators found several .30-caliber shell casings on the property, along with a 9 mm handgun they suspected was dropped by one of the intruders. Investigators were able to identify the first registered purchaser of the firearm, who in turn provided evidence he had sold the gun to Watson a year earlier. Watson allegedly told investigators he had given the gun to his cousin and co-defendant, Stanton.

Watson reportedly also told investigators he had arranged for Stanton and Richardson to purchase cocaine from Gonzalez. He claimed that he had not been present for the purchase, but had received a call from Stanton saying "it went bad." Watson said he learned of Gonzalez's death a few days later. 

Investigators' attempts to interview Stanton and Richardson were unsuccessful, according to the report.

Luis Gonzalez was shot and killed at his home on Monahan Drive on Sept. 12, 2005.

During the investigation, OCSO personnel also recovered a cap and gloves from a driveway a short distance from Gonzalez's home. A DNA analysis linked the items to Snowden, who had not been previously identified by Watson. OCSO attempts to interview him also were unsuccessful.

A major break came in June 2021, when a confidential source for the FBI gave a detailed account of a conversation he purportedly had with Snowden in 2012. 

The informant claimed Snowden said he, Stanton and Richardson traveled from Alabama to Fort Walton Beach to rob Gonzalez. When they entered the apartment, Gonzalez reportedly ran into a bedroom and reached into a cabinet. Fearing that Gonzalez was about to arm himself, Stanton allegedly shot him and the group fled back to Alabama without taking anything.

Luis Gonzalez

Both Watson and Snowden have been arrested. However, deputies are still looking for Stanton and Richardson.

Anyone with information on either man's whereabouts is asked to call the OCSO at 850-651-7400 or Emerald Coast Crime Stoppers at 850-863-TIPS, emeraldcoastcrimestoppers.com, or through the P3 Tips Mobile application.