Miya Marcano: Person of interest asked girl's family about her BEFORE missing report
The vanished teen's distraught relatives said when they arrived at the apartment where Marcano lived, they encountered a 'nervous' Armando Caballero outside
Before it was made public that 19-year-old Miya Marcano had gone missing from her Orlando apartment complex last week, maintenance worker Armando Caballero, a person of interest in her disappearance prior to him taking his own life, asked her family if they were looking for her.
The teen's distraught relatives said on Saturday, September 25, they arrived at the Arden Villas apartments, where Marcano lived, to look for her, and encountered Caballero outside. "He was trying to leave. His lights were off. He said, 'Are you looking for Miya?' I said, 'Who are you?' He said, 'I’m the maintenance guy. I heard you’re looking for me,'" Marcano's aunt Semone Westmaas told The Sun. Marcano's father, Marlon, then asked Caballero if he had been in contact with Marcano. The disappeared woman's cousin Callie Sue said he appeared 'quite nervous.' Sue added that the interactions seemed "weird" because Marcano's family had not yet announced her disappearance.
Marcano's case holds the attention of the Internet as the news comes after another missing woman was found dead. Gabby Petito, a 22-year-old vlogger went missing after going on a cross country trip with her boyfriend Brian Laundrie. After Petito's body was found, Laundrie, who was named a 'person of interest' in the case, went missing, sparking a manhunt for him. He is still to be found.
Caballero found dead
On Monday, Caballero, 27, was found dead from an apparent suicide. Caballero was reported to be a maintenance man at Marcano's apartment complex since June. According to Orange County Sheriff John Mina, Caballero expressed a romantic interest in Marcano which she repeatedly rebuffed. Mina further noted on Monday, September 27, that a maintenance-issued master key fob, which Caballero was known to have, was used to enter Marcano's apartment 30 minutes before the end of her shift. An arrest warrant was issued for Caballero for burglary related to him entering Marcano's apartment without permission, Mina added.
The maintenance worker at the complex is the sole suspect in Marcano's disappearance, police said Thursday. More than 60 Florida detectives, with assistance from the FBI, are currently searching for the missing woman. At least 30 searches have been conducted, some of which utilized helicopters, K9 units, and dive teams. They spanned across three counties to look for the girl. Mina said investigators are deploying all possible resources in an effort to locate Marcano, noting that they are working to obtain mobile phone data that may aid in the search. Cabellero was initially interviewed by the detectives for tips as he worked in the same apartment complex as Marcano. She was scheduled to catch a flight to Fort Lauderdale that night but never made it to the airport, her family said.
Sue confirmed that he had an intense obsession with her cousin. "He was infatuated with her, he was in love with her. I don’t know the very specifics of it, but he was constantly texting her and then had left her alone and then went back to texting her again," Sue told Fox 32 Orlando.
Shortly after Marcano went missing, Caballero's cellphone pinged in New Smyrna, Florida — located about 60 miles from Orlando. Also, reports suggested that a man matching Caballero's description was seen exiting a silver car. He was carrying gloves, a blanket, and a bag, going into a different apartment building hours after she vanished.
Caballero took the 'cowardly way out'
The authorities believe Caballero is responsible for the disappearance of Marcano. He had told the police that he had seen Marcano at 3 pm on Friday, which was about two hours before she was last seen.
"We don't know all the circumstances involved in what happened there, but he is - was obviously - the prime suspect," sheriff Mina said.
Sue said the family believes Caballero took the 'cowardly way out' by killing himself. We are angry because he's left us with some many questions, questions that may go forever unanswered because there may be things that only he was only present and only he'll ever know," she told The Sun. "I just feel really angry and frustrated because I felt like we had him and then he was gone."
She added that they still hope to find Marcanao alive. "We're still very hopeful and determined to find Miya," she told the outlet. "We know we're going to find her and that she's going to be okay."