Police found a car near the Mexican border on Friday that had been connected to a missing teen and a Los Angeles-area homicide investigation.
The drivers, Roman Cerratos and Maricela Mercado, are suspects in the murder of a 32-year old man in the city of Carson in Los Angeles County, the Sheriff's Department said. Mercado is the mother of 15-year-old Alora Benitez, for whom an Amber Alert was issued on Thursday.
#AmberAlert – *UPDATE in CARSON HOMICIDE. Unoccupied VEHICLE RECOVERED by @SanDiegoPD in #SanYsidro. Suspects and Victim still outstanding. New bulletin with updated photos' @CarsonLASD https://t.co/ptRsm1CFiC pic.twitter.com/9hdx9Offrp— LA County Sheriff's (@LASDHQ) April 20, 2019
Benitez was last seen around 9 a.m. on Wednesday in Torrance, California, with Mercado, 40, and Cerratos, 39, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.
The homicide victim, Jeffrey Appel, was found dead in a white Audi in Carson at around 7 a.m. on April 16, authorities said.
The two suspects are considered "armed and dangerous, " according to the Amber Alert poster. "The adults left the South Bay area with the child, Alora Benitez, and could possibly be in the San Diego area."