Things That Matter

Venezuelan Charged With Murdering 24-Year-Old Valerie Reyes Who Was Found Dead In A Suitcase

The death of 24-year-old Valerie Reyes is not only tragic but also riddled with confusion and senselessness. It’s been two weeks since Reyes’s family and friends had reported her missing. A week later police confirmed that Reyes had been found in a suitcase, dead on the side of the road near Greenwich, Connecticut. Police began a search for her killer. Now they have a suspect behind bars — but the story about how all of this transpired is far from over.

Police have charged 24-year-old Javier Da Silva, who dated Valerie Reyes a year ago, in connection with her death and disappearance.

CREDIT: Credit: Instagram / @igotavisual

Da Silva told police that Reyes died after they met up for one last fling, the New York Post reports. Da Silva said that the young woman died as a result of falling on the floor and cracking her head open. The man from Queens did admit that in a panic after her fall, he covered her mouth with packing tape, and tied up her arms and legs, then forced her body into a red suitcase. The NY Post reports that police were able to find Da Silva through an ATM surveillance camera that showed him taking out $1,000 from Reyes’s bank account on Jan. 30.

Family and friends began to question Reyes’ whereabouts on Jan. 29 when she didn’t show up for her shift at her job. What is also strange about this story is that Reyes had told her mother that she was afraid someone was going to kill her. She never elaborated on who she was talking about.

“She was going on about how frightened she was in that apartment,” her mother, Norma Sanchez, told the New York Times. “She was hearing about all these murders of women. ‘I just can’t get it out of my head,'” her daughter said to her and added “‘I feel like somebody’s going to murder me.'”

While her friends and family hadn’t heard from her since Jan. 28, on Jan. 30, two different surveillance cameras that showed Reyes was in Manhattan around 2 a.m. and 6:30 a.m. Investigators also said that the sheets, iPad, and iPhone were missing from Reyes’s apartment.

Da Silva — who holds dual citizenships from Venezuela and Portugal — is charged with federal kidnapping resulting in death. Da Silva also told the judge that he didn’t want the Venezuelan embassy to be informed of his arrest, but rather announce it to Portugal.

“Not Venezuela, Portugal,” Da Silva said.

“He failed to leave the United States within the required time frame,” ICE spokeswoman Rachael Yong Yow told Greenwich Time. And added that immigration authorities “‘will aim to take custody of Da Silva for immediate removal when he is released from criminal custody,’ if and when he released from jail.”

“Our heart is broken for the unfortunate and tragic loss of Valerie Reyes,” Reyes’s mother told the Greenwich Time.

CREDIT: Twitter/@tsizemorepix

“It was a blessing that they caught him so fast,” Reyes’s mother told Greenwich Time. “I’m hoping he gets life in prison — rot in there!”

She also said that she still has lots of questions surrounding her daughter’s death. She even knew her daughter and Da Silva had dated after they met on a dating website. She said that he was “never aggressive, but very persistent, the type not to take no for an answer. Weird.”

People have donated more than $31,000 to the family of Reyes via GoFundme.

“We want to show our love, support, and condolences to the Reyes family. Besides showing emotional support, we are asking friends and family to share and help them out with costs to lay her to rest,” reads the GoFundMe page. “All donations big or small are appreciated and helpful. Let’s keep the Reyes family in our prayers during this difficult time.”

READ: 5 Unsolved Murders That Have Left Families Shattered As They Search For Answers

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Father Allegedly Kills 6-Year-Old Son By Performing ‘Exorcism’ In Bathtub

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Father Allegedly Kills 6-Year-Old Son By Performing ‘Exorcism’ In Bathtub

KOLD News

An Arizona father, Pablo Martinez, was arrested on first-degree murder when he and his wife admitted the father had conducted an “exorcism” on their 6-year-old son. The mother and child belonged to the Pascua Yaqui Indian Reservation in Arizona, although the father lived with them, he is not a part of the tribe. The FBI and Pascua Yaqui police are investigating together, while the father is in custody of the U.S. Marshal Service.  

Authorities say the father poured hot water down the boy’s throat and on his body to perform an exorcism. When the 6-year-old’s body was discovered, 15 percent of it was covered in burns. 

Father allegedly murders his 6-year-old son during “exorcism.” 

Pablo Martinez told police he poured hot water down the throat of his 6-year-old son because the boy “was demonic and had a demon inside of him.” The father described the act as an exorcism. The child’s adoptive mother, Romelia Martinez, said her son “had been acting demonic,” when her husband suggested giving the 6-year-old and their other child a bath. 

Romelia told detectives she heard gurgling coming from the bathroom, she was not in the room, and when she opened the door she saw Pablo holding the boy under the bathtub faucet. The mother claims she screamed for the father to stop, at which point he said: “he had to do it.” Romelia said she called a pastor, then the police when he did not pick up. 

The father insisted he “saw something evil,” in the child. Police say Pablo believed the hot water was “working” to exorcise the demons.

Pascua Yaqui authorities arrive.

On the 911 call, Romelia said her husband was performing CPR on the child and had poured cold water on his body. Pablo told investigators that the hot water he poured down the 6-year-old’s throat was to “cast out the demon” and that the boy had an “unnatural fit of rage.”

According to BuzzFeed News, tribal authorities arrived at the Martinez home after receiving the call. Both parents were standing outside when they asked the mother what had happened, Romelia said, “He can tell you.”  

The father told the Pascua Yaqui authorities they “were not in the right mindset or belief,” before surrendering with his hands in the air and allegedly saying, “I did it.” This comment is particularly interesting because the mother and child are a part of the Pascua Yaqui Indian Reservation, but the father is not. 

Pablo Martinez is charged with first-degree murder. 

Authorities say Pablo allegedly confessed to holding his son underwater for five to 10 minutes. Fortunately, the other child left the bathroom in tears, seemingly traumatized from what was happening, but physically unharmed. 

Pascua Yaqui police found the child naked and propped up against a pillow in a back room. He was rushed to the hospital but pronounced dead. Court documents show the 6-year-old had burn marks on 15 percent of his body, on his head, elbows, and forearms. Pablo was taken into the custody of the US Marshal Service and arrested on first-degree murder. 

The FBI is conducting a joint investigation with the Pascua Yaqui Police Department. 

“The FBI has a strong, long-standing commitment to investigating violent crime in Indian Country. We are dedicated to working alongside our tribal and federal partners to protect all of our communities,” Jill McCabe, a spokesperson with the FBI’s Phoenix division, said in a statement.

Elementary school releases a statement.

Dear Lynn Urquides Families,It is with deep regret and sadness that I inform you of the death of one of our students….

Posted by Lynn Urquides Elementary School on Saturday, September 28, 2019

The 6-year-old boy had special needs and attended Lynn Urquides Elementary School. Principal Marisa Salcido released a statement about the child’s death. 

“It is with deep regret and sadness that I inform you of the death of one of our students,” Salcido wrote on Facebook. “I want to let you know that Lynn Urquides Elementary administrative team has been working with TUSD Leadership and the Coordinator of TUSD Counseling to ensure that we provide every means of support and assistance to all the students, along with our staff. Our counselors are available to help staff and any student who is struggling with death or other issues that may surface.”

The school will provide grief support and counseling to students. 

Exorcisms today. 

In 2018, demands for exorcisms increased threefold causing the Vatican to address the uptick during an Italian conference. However, the purpose was not to address increase, but rather the methods priests use to perform the exorcisms themselves. Friar Beningo Palila stated there are around 500,000 cases requiring exorcisms in Italy alone. He believes the increase of use in tarot cards and fortune tellers “open the door to the devil and to possession.” 

“A self-taught exorcist certainly meets errors,” Palila said. “I will say more: it would also take a period of apprenticeship, as happens for many professionals.”

The statement seems all the more ominous in the context of the 6-year-old boy’s tragic death. 

The Woman Rumored To Be One Of El Chapo’s Greatest Assassins Was Just Laid To Rest Among Family And Friends

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The Woman Rumored To Be One Of El Chapo’s Greatest Assassins Was Just Laid To Rest Among Family And Friends

Facebook / claudiachfelix

Regardless of how one leads their life, in the end, everyone deserves the right to be buried with dignity and have their friends and family mourn them as they please. In the eyes of those that loved them the most, they see no wrongdoings, or if they accept them, have at least made peace with it. In the complex story of Claudia Ochoa Félix, her life may have been rumored with violence and crime, but for her friends and family, despite her troubled past, they remembered with a lot of love. 

The loved ones of Claudia Ochoa Félix gathered in Culiacan in Sinaloa, Mexico, for her burial and funeral services.

Credit: Instagram/ @claudiaochoa_felix

As reported two weeks ago, on Sept. 14, Ochoa Félix was found dead in Culiacan of a possible drug overdose. Juan José Ríos Estavillo, the Sinaloa State Attorney, has now confirmed that to be true. He also said, according to Milenio, that there was no suspected foul play. 

Estavillo “reported that the substances Ochoa Félix ingested were those that caused her death due to bronchial aspiration asphyxiation, and clarified that it was a death derived from a non-violent cause.” They also report that her body was then turned over to her family on Sunday and then take later to a funeral home. 

Her brother also confirmed her death via Facebook saying, “Hi, I’m Sergio Ochoa Félix just to inform you that my sister Claudia Ochoa Félix has passed away. We thank you for everything and thank you very much rest in peace sister see you there in heaven.”

Her family and friends filled the burial site and the funeral home with countless flowers and balloons.

The funeral service area was decorated in such a lively way that it resembled a celebration and not a funeral. People donated large flower crowns, as well as flowers arranged in massive crosses, which adorned the entire premises. At the burial grounds, friends and family released gold and silver balloons in the shape of stars.  They had also a live band that played traditional ranchera music. 

Ochoa Félix left behind three children. 

Credit: Instagram/@chismes_calientes2019

Most of the images that we’ve seen from the funeral services on social media didn’t show specific people that attended but we’re assuming her three children were there. 

One of the most hard-hitting images from Ochoa Félix’s funeral is of her only daughter reaching out to her mother’s coffin.

Credit: Instagram/ @claudia_felix_ochoa1

We can’t imagine what their life will be like now without their mother. It is also unclear who will take charge of the children. 

People on social media also expressed their feeling over Ochoa Félix’s death.

There’s no denying she had fans in Mexico and in the United States.

The most beautiful image on social media has to be the one of her family and friends releasing gold and silver balloons into the air among loud cheers.

They truly celebrated her life, which is how funerals should be, a celebration. 

Ochoa Félix used to be referred to as la “Empress of Ántrax” and the “Kim Kardashian of organized crime”.

Credit: Instagram/ @claudia_felix_ochoa1

Ochoa Félix was seen as one of the most powerful women within the Mexican cartel, though she always denied that title and had said she had nothing to do with organized crime. 

“My children are being subjected to bullying, my mother is suffering from anxiety, and I am devastated and without peace, and now my physical integrity is threatened,” Félix said in a 2014 interview with VICE. “That’s not me in the majority of them,” she added. “I’ve filed a complaint before the authorities so that they can investigate and arrest those responsible for opening and administering [the accounts], causing irreparable harm to my children and myself.”

While she denied her affiliations with criminal organizations her Instagram page showed her both posing as a model and around weaponry. She was also known to have had affiliations with El Chapo’s cartel.

It’s clear she’s leaving a legacy behind. However, whether her legacy will be good or bad remains to be seen. When someone dies that has connections to organized crime, there is always someone close-by ready to take over that spot. We shall see who will take over for Ochoa Félix because it may remain empty forever, considering she always denied any involvement with El Chapo’s group or the local cartel in Sinaloa, Los Anthrax. For her children and her family they will remember this woman as a beautiful person who was always there for them. 

READ: Claudia Ochoa Félix, Alleged Crime Leader Of The Sinaloa Drug Cartel, Was Found Dead