Car found, deputy arrested amid investigation into fatal kidnapping of Homestead woman – NBC 6 South Florida

Car found, deputy arrested amid investigation into fatal kidnapping of Homestead woman – NBC 6 South Florida

A car used in the kidnapping and abduction of a Homestead woman in central Florida has been found and is linked to other murders, while a deputy has been arrested in connection with the investigation into the mysterious crime, officials said.

The shocking events in the murder of 31-year-old Katherine Altagracia Guerrero De Aguasvivas were revealed by Seminole County Sheriff Dennis Lemma at a news conference Monday.

“This is out of a TV show right?” Lemma told reporters. “There are a lot of amazing situations here.”

Shocking video from a witness showed the abduction of Aguasvivas in broad daylight on Thursday at a Winter Springs intersection.

Authorities believe they have found the body of a Homestead woman who went missing after her carjacking at gunpoint in central Florida was caught on camera. NBC6’s Niko Clemmons reports

Lemma said Aguasvivas left Homestead earlier that day and was driving a white Dodge Durango when a green Acura hit his rear bumper.

Aguasvivas called her husband and told him that someone was following her and sexually assaulting her, and the husband told her not to stop but neither of them called 911, Lemma said.

A witness video showed Aguasvivas stopped at a red light at an intersection as a masked man got out of the Acura and approached the Dodge with a gun.

He pointed the gun at Aguasvivas and then got into the back of the Dodge.

“You need to do something now because I don’t know what’s going on,” the witness told authorities in a 911 call from the incident. “He was chasing a car, he hit a car, he got out of the car with the hood up. his face and he had a gun it looked like.”

Authorities believe the gunman forced Aguasvivas to continue driving while holding him at gunpoint.

Officials said the Dodge continued into Osceola County, where they believe it ended up in a new construction area.

Less than two hours after the abduction, the authorities received a call of a burning car in the construction area and the authorities arrived and found the car, believed to be a Durango, burnt, with a body inside.

Authorities believe the body inside is Aguasvivas, although they are awaiting official confirmation from DNA or dental records.

Investigators also found a dozen shell casings at the scene, Lemma said. The shells contain 10 mm bullets, similar to the gun used in the carjacking, Lemma said.

At a news conference Monday, Lemma said the green Acura, the only one of its kind in Florida, was found abandoned Saturday in Orlando.

After a series of sales, the car had been off the street without registration since February, and any license plate it had would have been stolen, Lemma said.

According to Lemma, the Acura had been driven from an apartment complex in Orange County on March 19.

A tow truck driver was found dead in a hail of gunfire in Orange County on April 10, the day before Aguasvivas’ kidnapping, Lemma said.

A green car matching the Acura description was at the scene, and of the 100 rounds fired at the scene at least one was a 10mm, which Lemma said was unique and unusual.

Lemma was asked if the deaths of Aguasvivas and the tow truck driver were connected.

Authorities believe they have found the body of a Homestead woman who was kidnapped at gunpoint in central Florida, and a newly released 911 call shows the man watched the horrific scene unfold on Thursday.

“I absolutely think they are connected but we will have to have physical evidence that proves it absolutely,” he said.

Meanwhile, in another surprise, an Orange County deputy was arrested during the investigation into Aguasvivas’ murder, Lemma said.

Deputy Francisco Estrella was arrested Sunday on five charges including obstructing the investigation of a crime, illegal disclosure of communications, obtaining an electronic device without a warrant, wiretapping and using a two-way communication device to facilitate a crime.

According to Lemma, after Dodge and the body were found, Aguasvivas’ husband contacted the deputy’s wife, who is a family friend.

The deputy then contacted the Seminole Sheriff’s Office seeking information about the case and the chief detective, Lemma said.

Estrella, who has been a deputy for only about a year, gave a false name and recorded the conversation, then illegally accessed Florida’s driver’s license system to obtain information about the lead detective, Lemma said.

The information and records were handed over to Aguasvivas’ husband, Lemma said.

“What they had to find is something I’m very interested in,” Lemma said. “Why would someone do this? Why would they put their career and life on the line to communicate with one of our detectives, to give an alias in the process? It’s terrifying.”

Lemma said Aguasvivas’ husband has been cooperating, and is currently not a person of interest or facing charges.

“To be honest, I think he knows a lot more than what he shared,” Lemma said. “You do not have your wife to communicate with you that you are getting rammed by a car and go two hours without calling anyone.”

Lemma said the husband gave out his phone, which led to the discovery of Estrella’s involvement and arrest.

But Lemma said there are still questions about the original reason for Aguasvivas’ husband’s trip to central Florida, allegedly to see family members.

“I think the original story was that he was here to visit family members. I don’t know if we believe that,” Lemma said. “I think there are a lot more opportunities that he could help fill in regarding the circumstances surrounding this crime and now potentially other crimes.”

Lemma was also asked if he thought the case could be linked to gang members or karate.

“I think anyone who is looking at these situations will go there directly. And our investigation is also investigating any possibility of that,” he said. “But at this point I’m not ready to turn over the rock and reveal whether we’re going to do it or not.”

The principal investigator whose information was accessed is being protected by additional material as a precaution.

“The last place anyone would want to go is around this detective, I can promise you that,” Lemma said.

Authorities are trying to determine the motive behind Aguasvivas’ murder, but Lemma said it appears the residents of Acura knew who they were targeting.

Investigators have also been looking for two suspects believed to be in the Acura area.

“We still have very dangerous people who are on the streets. We still want to encourage our public not to approach these people, they should appear to be armed and dangerous,” Lemma said.