New York police say a couple is under arrest in the murder of a woman whose remains were found inside of plastic bags scattered among two parks in the Bronx over the last week—and at least one of the suspects is believed to have been the woman’s friend.
Lisa Marie Valasquez, 25, of Melrose, died of “multiple blunt-impact” blows to her head before parts of her body were discovered at Crotona Park on Friday, New York Post reports, citing police and the city medical examiner. On Tuesday, authorities found a second bag of body parts at Barretto Point Park in Hunts point.
Daquan Wheeler, 31, of the Bronx, is facing multiple charges in the case including murder and concealment of a corpse. Wheeler’s girlfriend, 30-year-old Ciara Martinez, of the Bronx, is also facing charges including concealment of a corpse and tampering with physical evidence.
Officials escorted the suspects out of the 42nd Precinct on Wednesday night, NBC New York reported. As Martinez was led away in handcuffs she could be heard yelling to reporters.
“She was my friend and I love her!”
Officials believe Wheeler and Martinez were fighting before Velasquez came over to try and help, ABC 7 reports. Authorities responded to a domestic issue call and arrived at couple’s home to investigate the dispute, but left after filing a report.
Wheeler reportedly took off as well, but officials said he returned with a hammer, striking the victim twice in the head.
Loved ones are trying to come to terms with the unfathomable news.
“She was tortured, for Christ sake, she didn’t deserve that,” Velasquez’s aunt, Jacqueline Perez said, according to New York Post. “She was a good girl. It’s heartbreaking to me.”
This isn’t the first violent tragedy the family endured. In 2006, Valasquez, along with two siblings, horrifyingly witnessed the murder of their pregnant mother at the hands of an ex-boyfriend.
Valasquez was 12 years old when her mother died. At the time, she spoke with the New York Post about the slaying and spoke of her plans to help with the unborn baby.
“I wanted to buy the [unborn] baby a crib. I wanted to help Mom as much as I could and buy the baby clothes and food. I wanted to be a supportive sister.”
[Feature Photo: Lisa Maria Valasquez/Facebook]