Crime

Boyfriend accused of stealing from the late Andrea Greenberg dies in fiery suicide

In this photo posted on March 11 on Facebook, Alejandro Aparicio poses next to his motorcycle. Aparicio was killed Sunday in a head-on collision with a tractor trailer on US 41.
In this photo posted on March 11 on Facebook, Alejandro Aparicio poses next to his motorcycle. Aparicio was killed Sunday in a head-on collision with a tractor trailer on US 41.

At 4:18 p.m. on Sunday, March 17, Alejandro Aparicio made a rambling post on Facebook in which he promised to soon be reunited with his late girlfriend Andrea Greenberg. To many of Aparicio’s friends, the post read like a suicide note.

Just a few minutes later, Aparicio drove his motorcycle directly into the oncoming path of a tractor-trailer heading east on U.S. 41 at mile marker 42.

That collision caused a second truck to plow into the rear of the first truck, causing it to jackknife across U.S. 41. Both vehicles burst into flame.

Aparicio, 59, was instantly killed. Darren Caprara, director of operations for the Miami-Dade Medical Examiner’s Office, confirmed Aparicio’s death. The case is still under investigation.

One truck driver was taken to Kendall Regional Medical Center. He was released early Wednesday, according to the hospital.

At the time of his death, Aparacio faced criminal charges for theft and other financial crimes.

In February, Aparicio was ordered by a judge to wear an ankle GPS-monitoring device after being charged with stealing Greenberg’s money and forging her will. Early Monday morning, the signal from the device went dark, spurring a judge to issue a warrant for Aparicio’s arrest. The presumption by authorities was that Aparicio, who was facing up to 65 years in prison, had gone on the lam.

The charges of financial crimes, filed by the State Attorney’s Office, were the result of a prolonged legal battle in probate court between Aparicio and Greenberg’s sister Valerie Greenberg, who accused him of stealing money from Andrea, forging her will to make himself the sole heir of her $600,000 estate and other financial crimes.

“Alejandro poisoned and killed my sister,” Valerie said in a statement to the Herald. “The walls were closing in on him. Rather than face the truth and take responsibility for what he did, he chose this way out. It does not bring Andrea back. But now my family and I can focus on remembering Andrea.”

Greenberg, a well-liked veteran of Miami’s real estate brokerage industry, was found dead by Aparicio in their home on Oct. 17, 2017. The Miami-Dade Medical Examiner’s report concluded she died from “acute combined drug toxicity” involving three kinds of the opioid fentanyl.

That explanation never sat well with Greenberg’s friends, who knew the 54-year-old as someone “completely averse to drugs,” according to her longtime friend Amy Zakarin.

“Andrea drank wine at social gatherings, and that was it,” Zakarin said. “Nothing made sense about her dying when she was so healthy and happy. I’m in shock and so sad about all of this. The fact that Alejandro drove head-on into that truck and put other people in harm’s way is devastating.”

Aparicio’s friends, too, were shocked by the news of his death, although they had begun to worry after reading his final Facebook post on Sunday.

“It’s a tragic end,” said Juan Restrepo, who had been friends with Aparicio since childhood. “I’m not entirely surprised, because I told my cousin on Sunday Alejandro was probably going to kill himself. I never thought he was the kind of guy who would try to flee. But I’m still at a loss for words. It’s a tragic, tragic end.”

If you are in crisis, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting TALK to 741741.

You can also dial: 2-1-1 or 954-740-6731. If you prefer not to call, you can text “FL” to 741741 for a live counselor.

Rene Rodriguez has worked at the Miami Herald in a variety of roles since 1989. He currently writes for the business desk covering real estate and the city’s affordability crisis.
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