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Tuesday 16 July, 2024
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California woman Andrea Vasquez found dead

BY Anas Shah Aug 23, 2023. 04:39 pm UPDATED: Aug 23, 2023. 04:39 pm

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The body of a missing California woman who was shot and kidnapped late Sunday was discovered 24 hours later, after police reported the arrest of a suspect in the “random attack.”

Andrea Vazquez’s corpse was discovered late Monday night in a vegetated field in Moreno Valley, according to a news release from Whittier police.

Authorities originally stated that Vazquez was removed from the parked car she was in with her boyfriend at Penn Park around midnight Sunday after a shooter fired at them.

Police in Whittier detained Gabriel Esparza, 20, in connection with the case hours before they discovered Vazquez’s remains. He was arrested without incident at his workplace in Lakewood, according to police.

The Whittier resident is facing charges of murder and kidnapping.

“At this time, it appears that Andrea Vazquez and her male companion were randomly targeted by the suspect at Penn Park,” Whittier police said.

Her family was hoping for a safe return before the tragic discovery.

“It’s a pain nobody deserves,” her mother Anna told KCLA. “She was my everything.”

Meanwhile Vasquez’s older sister told the station she couldn’t sleep as her sister was missing.

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“It’s hard to get rest, it just feels guilty to even sleep,” Edlyn said. “She’s a homebody. She was my best friend.”

After the suspect fired, Vasquez’s boyfriend exited the car. However, when he arrived, he saw blood near his car and his girlfriend had vanished, according to authorities.

Authorities have seized a firearm linked to the murder as well as Esparza’s 2013 white Toyota Tacoma trunk.

The suspect in the murder is being jailed without bail. The case will be turned over to the District Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles County. Whittier is approximately 20 miles north of downtown Los Angeles.

“Detectives are not disclosing any additional details at this time because the investigation is ongoing,” Whittier police said.

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