Best friend's boyfriend arrested for murder of Bronx woman whose remains were dumped in NYC parks
Police ID'd the dismembered human remains found in plastic bags in two Bronx parks as 25-year-old Lisa Marie Velasquez, who was allegedly killed by her best friend's boyfriend
Just hours after law enforcement authorities released the identity of the person whose remains were found in plastic bags at two New York City parks this week, two people related to the crime were taken into custody.
The two 'perpetrators' involved in the death of 25-year-old Lisa Marie Velasquez -- her longtime pal Ciara Martinez, 30, and her boyfriend Daquan Wheeler, 31 -- were arrested on Wednesday, stated a Twitter announcement by Chief Dermot Shea.
According to the New York Daily News, authorities located two plastic bags in Crotona Park in the Bronx over the weekend which contained human body parts. On Tuesday, they discovered three more bags containing human remains in Barretto Point Park, three miles from the previous location.
I want to thank the men and women of the 42 Detective Squad, Bronx Homicide and all who worked on the murder case of Lisa Marie Velasquez. Your collective efforts led to those responsible for her murder. Two perpetrators are now in custody. #Bronx @NYPDnews @NYPDChiefofDept pic.twitter.com/LBTKQawoNW— Chief Dermot F. Shea (@NYPDDetectives) August 30, 2018
On Wednesday, authorities identified Velasquez from the recovered evidence. According to the New York Post, the city medical examiner concluded her cause of death to be "multiple blunt impact injuries of [the] head with skull fractures."
Speaking to The New York Times, relatives and neighbors of Velasquez revealed that she was an embattled child who had witnessed the death of her pregnant mother after she was stabbed and strangled by her partner back in 2006. She was later raised by her grandmother.
Investigators searched a home on Wednesday night on Longfellow Avenue in Longwood. According to the Daily News, police believe it was the same place where the young woman was dismembered.
According to sources in law enforcement, Velasquez was last seen leaving her apartment in the Melrose Houses on August 21, to rescue her pal Martinez, but, cops say, she ran into Wheeler, who beat her to death, then butchered her to conceal his crime.
DAQUAN WHEELER: Charged with murder in the dismemberment of Lisa Velasquez. Police say he smashed her over the head with a hammer. @News12BX #LisaVelasquez #bronx #crime #nyc pic.twitter.com/Sa7Xfa2wNp— Anthony Carlo (@AC_TV12) August 30, 2018
Her aunt, Jacqueline Perez, said, “She came to my mother’s house. She grabbed her bag. She left in a rush. She said she had to help a friend who was in danger. And then she ran out."
“Ciara Martinez was her best friend,” she said. “I was calling and calling [Martinez]. I wanted to know if she knew anything. But she never picked up. I never got through. I don’t know who that guy is. It must have been Ciara who called her when she ran out."
“We don’t know who he is. We don’t know who she was seeing. We don’t know who she was hanging out with. They got one person arrested. The police told me she was dead before he dismembered her.
“The type of animal who would do this to another human being … she was tortured,” Perez said. “She didn’t deserve this. She didn’t deserve to die this way. Whether she was a good girl or a bad girl, she didn’t deserve this.”
A nearby resident on Longfellow Avenue claimed she saw a man climbing through a window on that fateful day, and subsequently heard the desperate screams of a woman.
The neighbor, who identified herself only as 20-year-old Lizannette, said, “There was a guy going through the window and she was screaming. All I know is she was screaming ‘You gonna kill me! You gonna kill me!’” While she didn't see the man's face, she could tell he had light brown skin and was about 30 years old.
“I never saw his face. I never saw her. I just heard her scream,” Lizannette said. “It was like a lot of noise.”