An 11-year-old girl was discovered deceased beneath her bed in Texas, and a week later, an 18-year-old man suspected of her murder and sexual assault has been apprehended, according to authorities on Saturday.
Juan Carlos Garcia-Rodriguez is set to face capital murder charges in connection with the death of Maria Gonzalez. The Pasadena Police Department, in a press release, stated that Maria’s lifeless body was found in an apartment in Pasadena, Texas, on August 12.
After obtaining additional evidence that linked Garcia-Rodriguez to the incident, police named him as a person of interest on Friday. He had been residing in the same apartment complex as Gonzalez but had left since then. He was apprehended in Shreveport, Louisiana, and is now awaiting extradition to Texas.
On the day of the incident, Maria texted her father to inform him of someone knocking at the door. Carmelo Gonzalez, Maria’s father, called the police on August 12 after discovering that his daughter wasn’t breathing. Unfortunately, she was declared dead at the scene.
According to police, Maria was home alone after her father left for work around 9:45 a.m. Her last communication with her father was a message stating that someone was knocking at the door. Carmelo advised his daughter not to open the door, and she reassured him that she wouldn’t. However, he never heard from her again.
Subsequently, Carmelo asked his brother and sister-in-law, who also resided in the same apartment complex, to check on Maria. They discovered the front door unlocked and signs of disarray but couldn’t locate Maria.
Upon returning from work, Carmelo found his daughter’s lifeless body concealed beneath her bed, wrapped in a plastic trash bag that had been placed inside a laundry basket. The medical examiner determined that Maria had died from asphyxia due to strangulation. Additionally, evidence showed that she had been sexually assaulted.
Following the arrest of the suspect, the Gonzalez family issued a statement expressing gratitude to the police. The statement conveyed their hope that the suspect would face the full consequences of the law for his actions against their daughter.