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How Did Investigators Trace Antolin Garcia-Torres to Sierra's Disappearance?

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Antolin Garcia-Torres, 21, was arrested (on suspicion of the kidnapping and murder of teenager Sierra LaMar) at a Safeway where he worked in Morgan Hill, Ca. at around 6:00 PM Monday evening.

The suspect was arrested by the Santa Clara Sheriff's Office based on a bevy of physical evidence, that would include a red VW Jetta and Garcia-Torres' DNA identified on Sierra's actual clothes, which were in her pink Juicy bag, that had been deposited between a building and a large cactus (presumably, by the arrested suspect).

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Some excellent detective work was conducted here by Santa Clara County, we ought to say now! But how were they able to catch this young man, who was mostly without a record and who worked at a family grocery store, a Safeway, conveniently available for local Morgan Hill residences? And another item we are curious about, was Antolin a repeat offender, or possibly a serial rapist, or conceivably a serial killer? Of course, these questions will be closely scrutinized.

We hear that an episode of America's Most Wanted on Sierra LaMar's case, which aired last week, generated some good leads regarding this red VW Jetta. It appears as if there were actual eyewitnesses (from March 16th) who saw this Jetta driving around Sierra's neighborhood. This is big! Still one can't help but wonder why they didn't come forward earlier with these vehicle observations? To corroborate the car evidence, the authorities have several surveillance videos from businesses and homes unveiling a roaming (out of place) red VW Jetta.

sierra lamar suspect
But how did they tie the Jetta to Garcia-Torres? We know the car was confiscated on May 8th. How did they find out it belonged to this Antolin character? Well, this could have happened in any number of ways, one of which is the actual way the car was identified as Antolin's. Moreover, once they had impounded the car, lab technicians could have extracted plenty of DNA samples of this young man. I believe this is how they nabbed Antolin!

After testing Sierra's clothing for DNA (other than Sierra's), they produced a match from other samples of DNA they got from Garcia-Torres. My theory is that the red Jetta provided detectives with this DNA; certainly we'll find out soon just how they linked him, but my theory is wrought with plausibility, if I don't say so myself. A further question, which perhaps probes into the criminal mind of this grocery store worker, is why would he deposit this pink Juicy bag in a fairly obvious location?

This is what I want to know. And then we have the two used condoms and handcuff box found on March 29th in a remote field. Did Garcia-Torres leave this incriminating evidence behind, two weeks after he had committed his crime? This connection or a lack of it should be revealed shortly! Did Antolin desire to be caught, maybe? There's no other reasonable explanation for leaving these items in a public place like this. And how did he originally make contact with Sierra? Was it on Twitter?

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Has he read some of my earlier articles, I quiver to ask? What was his demeanor at the Safeway where he worked through all these days and weeks, since March 16th? His co-workers will know. And did he do this before? Likely, we'll find out soon, unless he clams up like a pearl oyster when under the hot lamp. Kudos to these Santa Clara investigators and to the public, who put the spotlight on Sierra LaMar's mysterious case! I wish I could say I'm experiencing closure, but it's really just the exact opposite. I'm all the more uneasy and fidgety.

Authorities announce arrest in Sierra LaMar disappearance - San Jose Mercury News

John Kays identifies timeless remnants from our past that will endure, or be admired by future generations. Read more stories by John Kays.

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