Monday, April 15, 2024

Man with record of sexual assault arrested in murder of eight-year-old

A 37-year-old man arrested yesterday in Nuevo León is the principal suspect in the abduction and murder of an eight-year-old girl on Sunday.

Juan Fernando N was taken into custody in the city of Juárez after a tip from a private citizen. The state Attorney General had offered a reward of 500,000 pesos (US $26,000) for information leading to the arrest of the killer.

Ana Lizbeth Polina Ramírez was taken in Juárez’s Vistas del Río neighborhood near an office where her mother worked. Surveillance video captured an adult male approach the girl and talk to her outside the building.

Her body was found on Tuesday on a vacant lot in the same neighborhood.

The suspect in the video was identified as a man with a criminal record for sexual assault against minors and had served seven years in jail.

The Attorney General’s office said Ana Lizbeth died of asphyxiation on Sunday night. No further details were released “to preserve the dignity of the victim and her family.”

Today, members of Ana Lizbeth’s family were demanding the death penalty, a punishment prohibited under Mexican law.

Also today, state officials said the suspect had been sought since 2014 for violating a young girl, and had served as a police officer in Monterrey 18 years ago.

Meanwhile, the state is investigating why it took the Juárez municipal police 12 hours to report the child’s disappearance.

Her parents reported she was missing at about 11:00pm Sunday but it wasn’t until 7:00am Monday that state authorities were notified, triggering an Amber Alert.

Residents of Vistas del Río protested today against insecurity and the absence of a police presence in the area. Poor street lighting and many abandoned houses are also causes for concern, they said.

Source: El Universal (sp), Excélsior (sp), Vanguardia (sp)

UPDATED: This story was updated with new information at 4:45pm Thursday, July 19.

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