A teen-aged girl has been found dead in a pond after she was believed to be a victim of assault while walking with her friends to the mosque in Fairfax County, Virginia on early Sunday. The police said that the man suspected of being behind the girl’s killing has been charged with murder.
The police said they believe the body they found in a pond in the 21500 block of
Ridgetop Circle in Sterling, Virginia, is a 17-year-old girl from Reston who was reported to be missing in the area. The teen-ager’s group of friends were on their way to an all-night prayer session after eating and decided to scatter before the assault took place at 3 a.m.
Police spokeswoman Tawny Wright said the girl had been walking back to the All Dulles Area Muslim Society (ADAMS) Center with friends when she got involved in a disagreement with a man in a car early Sunday. The man assaulted her, and she became separated from her friends.
The girl's name has not been released, but a close family friend revealed to News4 the victim's name is Nabra. Nabra’s friends reported that she’s missing when they reached the mosque. The AdAMS’ personnel the ADAMS' personnel notified both Loudon County and Fairfax County authorities who immediately mounted an extensive search to locate the missing girl.
Authorities started searching for the girl about 4 a.m. Sunday in the area of Dranesville Road and Woodson Drive in Herndon. Police searched for several hours in a wooded area near Dranesville Road and Woodson Drive area in Herndon, Virginia. Loudoun County authorities also assisted in the investigation because the area borders the county.
During the search, one officer observed a car driving suspiciously in the area and pulled the driver over before taking him into custody. The driver was identified as Darwin Martinez Torres, 22, of Sterling. He was later arrested and charged with murder, police said.
Police discovered a female body in the pond about 3 p.m. The pond is 2 to 3 miles away from where the dispute between Nabra and her assailant happened. A baseball bat was recovered.
Authorities say it is hard to conclude at this point if the crime can be considered a case of “bias incident” against the girl’s religion, or if the dispute was the only motive behind the murder. On Monday, authorities said they would not investigate the incident as a hate crime.