THE BRONX — When the Collier County Sheriff’s Office in Florida stopped Christopher Gonzalez in Naples on Nov. 7 for driving with a revoked license, they already knew NYPD detectives had a murder warrant for his arrest.
New York State Police wanted to question Gonzalez, too.
Gonzalez , 37, was already a suspect in the December 2000 rape and strangulation of a 19-year-old Bronx woman. He was also the prime person of interest in the 2005 murder of a 25-year-old Yonkers woman, whose body was dumped off the Sprain Brook Parkway.
On Friday, a law enforcement source told PIX11 News: “It’s his DNA from both bodies. We have a positive hit.”
So far, Gonzalez, who is a married father and was an employee at a Toys R Us in Naples, has only been charged with the murder of Dora Delvalle, 19, who was killed nearly 17 years ago. A source told PIX11 he lived five blocks away from Delvalle at the time of her murder.
Delvalle’s mother found her daughter's naked body — she had been choked with a phone cord — at 1186 E. 180 St. in the Bronx on Dec. 2, 2000.
A fingerprint left at the crime scene didn’t match anything in state and national databases at the time.
This year, Bronx detectives decided to resubmit the print — and this time, they got a match, leading them to Gonzalez.
Delvalle, who had married at age 16, was apartment sitting for her uncle, who was in the hospital, when she was killed.
Investigators received information that she may have met Gonzalez on an Internet chat room and arranged to have him visit.
Delvalle’s mother went to visit her daughter that Saturday evening and discovered her dead.
“That crime scene was a horrifying," an investigator told PIX11. “No mother should ever see that.”
Five years later, the body of 25-year-old Angel Serbay of Yonkers — the mother of a little boy — was found wrapped in a blanket and dumped on the shoulder of the northbound Sprain Brook Parkway. She also had been sexually assaulted and strangled.
The NYPD joined forces with the New York State Police on both cases, because investigators knew the same, then-unknown, male DNA was found on both victims’ bodies.
When Gonzalez was arrested in Florida, he denied killing anyone, but investigators had a warrant to get a sample of his DNA.
Results of the test tied Gonzalez to both murders.
The investigators think they may have a serial killer on their hands, because of the nature of the crimes.
"You have two forcible rapes and strangulations. People don’t do this and just stop,” our PIX11 source said. “It’s a pattern of behavior. They often have a ‘cooling off’ period and then they do it again. They usually only stop when they get arrested or commit suicide.”
On Friday, Gonzalez was still being held in custody in Collier County, Florida, because he’s fighting extradition to New York to face the murder charge.
But it’s unlikely he will win the extradition battle.
Neighbors and family said Delvalle’s mother never got over the trauma of finding her youngest child, and only daughter, slain.
“She was devastated,” neighbor Danny Cedeno told PIX11 News.
Delvalle’s cousin, Marisela Carmona, talked to PIX11 about how her aunt reacted to the news of an arrest.
“She was so happy,” Carmona said. “The detectives called her and said, ‘We found him!’”