EXCLUSIVE: A self-professed “monster,” who is behind bars on charges of shooting his wife dead over rape allegations, a workplace love triangle and an ongoing custody battle, has penned an emotional jailhouse confession, telling Fox News Digital that he will “never forgive [himself] for let[ting] the evil that got to [him] win.”
Omar Pena-Romero, 23, is awaiting arraignment at the Pulaski County Jail in Arkansas on capital murder charges in the shooting of his wife, 27-year-old Cassandra Pena-Romero; he may not appear in court for another two or three months, per the Pulaski County Public Defender’s office, and has not been assigned a public defender.
But rather than focusing on his legal defense, Pena-Romero told Fox News Digital that he is “more focused on the safety of [his] kid and his custody battle,” clearing his conscience and “let[ting] people know why I did what I did.”
“At that moment, I thought I had lost everything,” Pena-Romero wrote. “All I ever wanted was to save my family, but now I know I have done more than just destroy it … I was just too weak to move on.”
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Omar Pena-Romero, 23, stands accused of murdering his wife of four years, Cassandra Pena-Romero, 27, on Aug. 19. (Pulaski County Jail/Cassandra Pena-Romero/Facebook)
Pena-Romero shot Cassandra as she was leaving work at Metropolitan Emergency Medical Services dispatch center in Little Rock around 5:30 p.m. on Aug. 19, per an arrest report obtained by Fox News Digital.
Five hours after shooting his wife, per a police report, Pena-Romero was tracked down by Arkansas State Police with his gun in plain view. He was arrested without incident.
Previously, Pena-Romero was also an employee at the Arkansas dispatch center but was suspended after his Aug. 7 arrest for allegedly raping and assaulting Cassandra. Employees at MEMS had been debriefed and instructed not to allow their former coworker onto MEMS property.
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Rebecca Tennille, head of communications at MEMS, told Fox News Digital that she couldn’t “stomach the fact that he, a murderer, is going to be able to tell his side of the story again.”
“He killed her – she can’t tell her story,” Tennille said.
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Before she was shot, police said, Cassandra sent an “SOS text” to her coworkers, who rushed into the parking lot to find her bleeding. Alan Yeargan, Cassandra’s lover, according to police documents and social media posts, was among the first to render her aid.
“When I turned her over in the parking lot, I knew I would never forget her eyes in that moment,” Yeargan wrote in a Facebook post.
In an earlier post, Yeargan said that “people are not possessions – you only get to experience them for as long as they allow you to.”
Yeargan declined to comment for this story.
Four days after she was shot, Cassandra succumbed to her injuries, her employer told Fox.
Greg Thompson, executive director at MEMS, told Fox News Digital that Cassandra was a “wonderful person and dedicated employee.”
“She saved lives every day in her role as a MEMS dispatcher and continued to do so as an organ donor,” he said in a statement.
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“I know that saying sorry doesn’t change anything but I am,” Pena-Romero wrote in his confession. “I always protected her and cared for her – we [had] never got[ten] into an argument before. I have never put my hands on her… i thought our life was perfect with great jobs, great love towards each other and having a beautiful son.”
But Pena-Romero’s claims are contradicted by divorce papers served by his wife on Aug. 11, in which she petitioned a Pulaski Circuit Court judge to change her surname to Frederickson-Pena and assume full custody of the couple’s 18-month old son.
She argued that Pena-Romero was “not a fit or proper person to have custody of the child” and had threatened her on several occasions.
“[Pena-Romero] has threatened to take the minor child, steal an ambulance and flee. The defendant is a DACA recipient from Mexico,” the filing reads.
The document cites his voluntary stay at an area psychiatric facility in early August where he “presented with suicidal and homicidal ideations,” a suicide note he allegedly presented to his wife, and his subsequent arrest on rape, aggravated assault and interference with emergency communication at her Maumelle apartment that day.
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Cassandra first called police to her apartment when she received the suicide note and her husband told her he “did not wish to live if they could not be together,” per police documents. Allegedly, he was enraged when Cassandra called police because their supervisor and colleagues at the dispatch center would be aware of the situation.
Yeargan was the one to contact police after he hadn’t heard from Cassandra for a long period of time. When they arrived, per their report, Pena-Romero answered the door and claimed he and Cassandra had just had “make-up sex.” Meanwhile, Cassandra was naked and weeping on a couch inside and claimed that she had been raped.
Although he was deemed a flight risk due to his Mexican citizenship and previous comments, a state district court judge set Pena-Romero’s bail at $75,000, which was paid by his family a week later.
Pena-Romero has confessed to killing his wife but maintained to Fox News Digital that Cassandra’s rape accusation was false, lodged because “she thought it would get [him] deported instantly.”
“I actually believed him,” his sister, Mitzi Pena, told Fox News Digital. “I couldn’t believe it and the only way I could talk to him was if I would bail him out … as his sister, I did.”
Pena claimed that the couple’s Ring doorbell footage showed Yeargan entering the apartment after her brother’s arrest for Cassandra’s alleged rape – to her, this footage supported his claims that “he did not do it.”
“He has never had any law issues, it was just heartbreaking. But at the same time … he put me in a really bad spot. He put my family at risk,” Pena said. “I’ve told him that I cannot help him until he tells me the truth.”
At this point, Pena alleges, Arkansas’s Department of Human Services has not allowed her family to see Pena-Romero’s son and has been evasive surrounding the family’s attempts to inquire after his well-being.
“We’re not even thinking about Omar anymore. We’re thinking about [the child]. If he’s safe and with a good family that’s taking care of him, we’re going to be good with that.”
The Arkansas Department of Human Services said it could not comment on the situation.
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Wallace Allen, Cassandra’s uncle and one of her last living relatives, has petitioned for custody of the child, per publicly-available court records. Fox News Digital could not reach him for comment at press time.
Man makes jailhouse confession in love triangle shooting of fellow 911 dispatcher wife: ‘I know I’m a monster’
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