Murdered US attorney found at Penn Pike IC-286 v4

December 8, 2003
By Peter Samuel

E-ZPass records, an ATM machine withdrawal, and a creditcard purchase of gasoline have helped police track the route of federal attorney, Jonathan Luna who was found drowned after a brutal beating just off IC-286 (formerly Exit 21) of the Pennsylvania Turnpike in Lancaster county PA Dec 4. E-ZPass toll records indicate he drove up I-95 including the Delaware Turnpike into the Philadelphia area coming north from Baltimore. He then turned up at King of Prussia near I-76/I-276 and drove westward on the Turnpike to where he was killed.

Luna lived in Elkridge southwest of Baltimore. IC-286 on the Penn Pike, where his body was found is about 150km (95mi) away. Someone called him in the evening and he drove from his office north with a toll transponder on his windshield and creditcards that provide an electronic trail.

The Lancaster Co PA coroner says he was horribly beaten, stabbed at the site and that he died by drowning in the shallow creek. Luna's car was found abandoned nearby, the still engine running, with much blood on the floor and nearby. He seems to have departed the Pennsylvania Turnpike at Reading IC-286 (old Exit 21) where US-222 crosses. It is one turnpike exit with almost no development around it – the kind of unpopulated place that someone might choose to commit a violent crime.

Colleagues paid tributes to Luna as an exceptionally able, and decent man. But now it seems he had a wilder private life. Investigators have noted a Jonathan Luna was active on at least one dating service on the web, and they now think his murder may be a crime of passion, and unrelated to his work as a prosecutor. TRnews 2003-12-08v4

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