Ex-boyfriend killed Albany Park woman who was found in car last month, prosecutors say

An Albany Park woman who was found shot to death in her car last month was killed by her ex-boyfriend after a recent break-up, prosecutors said Sunday. Umar Ayuba, 32, is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Azucena Vargas, 42, on the 3300 block of West Cuyler late on February 25.

Azucena Vargas | GoFundMe

Vargas and Ayuba met while working at the same Domino’s pizza restaurant, Assistant State’s Attorney Kevin Meehan said, but she ended the relationship in January.

Meehan said Vargas drove home and parked near her home after working at the restaurant on February 25. Before she got out of the car, Ayuba walked up, shot her one time in the head, took her phone, and drove away in a van, according to Meehan. One of Vargas’ relatives later found her body in the car.

Investigators collected “extensive” surveillance video evidence that tracks Ayuba’s van before and after the murder, Meehan said.

The vehicle, registered to Ayuba’s mother, is seen arriving at the Domino’s and waiting until Vargas’ shift ends. It then traveled to the area of Vargas’ home before returning to Ayuba’s residence, Meehan alleged.

Police executed a search warrant at Ayuba’s home and allegedly found Vargas’ stolen phone in his sock drawer. Meehan said Ayuba admitted that he went to Vargas’ home to talk about their relationship but shot her and took her phone.

Ayuba was hospitalized Sunday and did not attend his bail hearing. He has no known criminal background, according to Meehan.

Judge Kelly McCarthy ordered Ayuba held in lieu of $1 million cash bail. That means he must post a full $1 million in cash to get out of jail. State law generally bars judges from holding defendants without bail if they are not physically present for the hearing.

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CWBChicago was created in 2013 by five residents of Wrigleyville and Boystown who had grown disheartened with inaccurate information that was being provided at local Community Policing (CAPS) meetings. Our coverage area has expanded since then to cover Lincoln Park, River North, The Loop, Uptown, and other North Side Areas. But our mission remains unchanged: To provide original public safety reporting with better context and greater detail than mainstream media outlets. Our editorial email address is news@cwbchicago.com