David Dodd 2:53 a.m., May 21
Suspected killer tracked by text messages, credit card, and surveillance video, investigators say
Marine corporal pleads not guilty to murder of Army reservist
The family of Alvin Bulaoro said he left home about 9 p.m. December 21, 2012. Alvin’s brother reported him missing December 23; he told investigators that Alvin was homosexual and “under financial stress.”
On January 3, the family reported they saw Alvin’s car parked in a local shopping center in Fallbrook; deputies who responded found the missing man’s body in the back of his car.
Sheriff’s investigator David Hillen described a series of events when he requested an arrest warrant for Kevin Coset:
December 19, at 6:34 p.m., surveillance video showed a man purchasing a cell phone at an Oceanside Radio Shack. This phone used cell towers around Camp Pendleton, some minutes later.
December 20, after 7 p.m., that cell phone exchanged more than twenty text messages with Alvin Bulaoro’s cell phone.
December 21, at 8:26 p.m., surveillance video showed a dark sedan parked at a Fallbrook grocery store. The last text messages to Alvin’s phone were at 8:29, the same night. At 8:41 p.m. Alvin’s car came into the same parking lot and parked near the dark sedan. A person got out of the sedan and into Alvin’s car, which left at 8:42. Alvin’s car returned at 11:30 p.m., a person got out and then into the dark sedan, then left. Alvin’s car did not move from this spot until his body was found in the back, on January 3, 2013.
December 21, a credit card was used to pay for hotel room number 129 at the Fallbrook Country Inn. The hotel charged the cardholder, Kevin Coset, extra fees because they noticed a comforter missing from the bed, and bloodstains in the room. Investigators later DNA matched that blood to Alvin Bulaoro.
Alvin Bulaoro died of multiple stab wounds to his upper torso and head, and two gunshots to the head, according to detective Hillen. Kevin Coset is the registered owner of two handguns, one .22 and one .38 caliber, the detective stated.
Kevin Albert Richard Coset, 23, is said to be a Corporal with the first Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion on Camp Pendleton. Coset pleads not guilty to first degree murder through his attorney Pal Lengyel-Leahu.
Victim Alvin Bulaoro, 24, was described as a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army Reserve, stationed out of Los Alamitos.