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Sheriff: DNA linked suspect to Sierra LaMar

8:07 AM, May 22, 2012   |    comments
Sierra LaMar
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MORGAN HILL, CA (AP) - Authorities say DNA evidence has linked a 21-year-old man in custody to the kidnapping and murder of a missing Northern California teenager.

Santa Clara County Sheriff Laurie Smith said at a Tuesday news conference that Antolin Garcia-Torres's DNA was found inside a bag belonging to Sierra LaMar. Garcia-Torres was arrested Monday.

Smith said they have uncovered ample evidence to believe Smith acted alone in a case of "stranger abduction," the worst kind of kidnapping.

Sierra hasn't been seen or heard from since she left her home in Morgan Hill to go to school on March 16. Authorities believe she was kidnapped while walking to a bus stop.

Smith said investigators have had Torres under surveillance since the end of March.

In a press conference Tuesday morning, Sierra's parents are still hopeful their daughter will be found alive. 

They pleaded with Torres to reveal details that will lead them to their daughter.  At the same time, they thanked the thousands of volunteers who have helped search for Sierra, saying they believe there is a reason that her body has not been found.  Volunteers and sheriff's officials have searched fields, open spaces and reservoirs near Morgan Hill since her disappearance.

The Associated Press

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