FNS: Juárez Field Sweep May Have Yi elded New Evidence in Serial Femicides
- February 24, 2002
Ciudad Juárez Field Sweep May Have Yielded New Evidence in Serial Femicides
Combing for evidence the Ciudad Juárez cotton field where her sister's body was discovered in November, 2001, Mayela González said on Sunday, February 24 that she was angry with the Chihuahua State Police for their weak investigation into her sister's case and other similar cases.
Just minutes later, Mayela and her mother Josefina González were shocked when two teenage boys found a plastic bag which contained what both women identified as the tan overalls that Claudia Ivette González was wearing the day she disappeared. The women believe that the overalls were overlooked during the State Police's previous investigation.
Between sobs, and flipping over the pants that lay on the bank of the canal just feet from where her daughter's body was discovered in November, Josefina González looked at what appeared to be grass and dirt stains on the back of the pants and said that Claudia Ivette's killer or killers must have had her sitting on the ground somewhere.
Speculating aloud about how her daughter's last minutes might have been, Josefina began sobbing harder and could not continue speaking.
Also present at the field sweep were Benita Monarrez, the mother of Laura Berenice Ramos, and Gloria Solis Reyes, the mother of Mayra Reyes.
The State Police claim that both Laura Berenice Ramos and Gloria Solis Reyes were among the eight bodies found in the field on November 6 & 7, 2001.
However, both women say they have refused to sign paperwork to accept the bodies and are awaiting the results of DNA testing currently being performed by the State Police. However, because of their doubts about the much criticized investigation, both women may not believe the results once they hear them, they say.
Benita Monarrez stated that despite an initial reluctance to attend the field sweep, she is now angry and ready to work harder than ever to resolve her daughter's case and those of the other missing and murdered young women in Cd. Juárez. Monarrez is also upset with the State Police, she says, because they will not investigate who has been using her daughter's cell phone or cell number since the time of her disappearance.
Gloria Solis Reyes, who believes that her daughter may have run away from home to live in one of the small New Mexico towns between El Paso and Las Cruces, said that she had never been to the field before Sunday. Asked if it was hard to be there she said, "Hard? No. Not with so many people. United it's better."
Supporting the families were a group of approximately 20 volunteers from Las Cruces, New Mexico and El Paso, Texas and 20 members of the Cd. Juárez search-and-rescue group Banda Civil.
Also found in the field were ripped or cut women's underwear, at least four pairs of shoes, a dress, human hair, and a newspaper article that had photos and descriptions of missing women from Cd. Juárez.
After receiving a call from city police that were watching the field sweep, State Police officers arrived at the scene and bagged what could be new evidence in the cases.
One state police officer told the volunteer groups that they had contaminated the evidence by touching it with their bare hands. Volunteers responded by saying that if it had not been for them, the evidence never would have been found.
Since 1993 nearly 300 women have been murdered in Cd. Juárez. Of these murders, between 70 and 80 are considered to be sexually-related murders and the work of one or more serial killers.
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