A 20-year-old individual was taken into custody on Monday in connection with the alleged murder of a woman who was kidnapped during a shooting incident over the weekend.
On Sunday, August 20, around midnight, 19-year-old Andrea Vazquez and a male companion were seated in a car at Penn Park in Whittier. During this time, an individual approached the vehicle and opened fire on them.
According to the Whittier Police, the male companion managed to escape from the scene. However, upon his return, he discovered that Vazquez was missing, and there was evidence of blood near the car. Reports from KTLA-TV indicate that the male in the car was Andrea Vazquez’s boyfriend.
A day after the abduction incident, Whittier Police detectives took Gabriel Esparza into custody around 3 p.m. at his workplace. He was arrested on charges of murder and kidnapping, and he is currently being held without the option of bail.
Law enforcement also recovered a weapon believed to be linked to the crime, as well as Esparza’s 2013 Toyota Tacoma. Later that same night, investigators located the lifeless body of Andrea Vazquez in a vegetation field located in Moreno Valley.
Police have stated that the suspect targeted Andrea Vazquez and her boyfriend seemingly at random.