Suspect asked Kroger employee where knives were before killing victim, court docs say

Jason Cooper (Provided Photo/IMPD)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Court documents are providing new details into the murder of a man at a south side Kroger grocery store.

Jason Cooper, 37, has been charged with murder in the death of 43-year-old Carlos Castro.

According to court documents obtained by 24-Hour News 8, officers from the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department responded on Friday around 8:30 p.m. to a Kroger supermarket located at 4202 S. East Street on a report of shots fired with a person shot inside the store.

Officers arrived to find Castro suffering from what appeared to be gunshot wounds and in the process of receiving CPR. Medics arrived to provide lifesaving efforts, but Castro died on the scene, according to court documents.

Officers separated and interviewed a number of witnesses outside the store.

One of those witnesses, a Kroger employee, told police that prior to what he described as a “scuffle” in the dairy aisle, Cooper had asked him where the kitchen knives were, and the employee had pointed them out to Cooper. He described Cooper as a white man with short blond har, tan pants, a red sweatshirt and a ball cap. The employee said when he turned the corner on the dairy aisle, Cooper was on top of Castro, and then Cooper stabbed Castro in the chest. The employee told police he heard three gunshots after that, and people in the store began to run. He told police he heard an additional gunshot as the suspect fled the store, according to court documents.

A woman at the scene called 911 and said a man with a similar description to the suspect had taken her silver 2007 Toyota Camry from the Kroger parking lot. At 8:40 p.m., an IMPD officer saw a car of the same description run a red light at the intersection of Thompson Road and Meridian Street. The officer attempted to pull the car over, which led to a short pursuit. The driver was taken stopped in the 8000 block of U.S. 31 South, according to court documents.

Officers identified the driver as Cooper, and they observed a gun with blood on it in the front passenger seat.

Police said Cooper “appeared to be nervous, twitching, speaking fast and was unable to focus,” and he was placed under arrest and taken to Eskenazi Hospital, according to the probable cause affidavit.

Cooper’s criminal record includes felony convictions for residential entry in 2002, sexual misconduct with a minor in 2003 and theft in 2005.

As of Monday morning, the Marion County Coroner’s Office could not specify if Castro died from a stabbing or shooting.

Cooper is being held in the Marion County Jail without bond and is scheduled to appear in court for an initial hearing on Oct. 24.