The body of Karen Garcia, 21, was found in her car parked in a lot outside a Marshalls store in Woodland around 3:45 p.m. Sunday, FOX40 reported. She was first reported missing on Jan. 9, two days after her 19-year-old sister Jessica was killed in a wrong-way crash. Four other people, all 25 years old and under, were pronounced dead.
Garcia initially left her home to go shopping. She then texted her family on Jan. 8 to tell them she was in Roseville and heading to Vacaville, but then never returned.
Garcia’s ex-boyfriend, Salvador Garcia Jr., was named a suspect in the 21-year-old’s death after investigators found “evidence of a homicide” inside her apartment, Colusa Police Department said on Monday.
Garcia Jr. told the Sacramento Bee last week that he and his ex-girlfriend have known each other since the third grade. They dated for nine years before breaking up this year and had a 2-year-old daughter together, CBS Sacramento reported.
“She loves her family,” he said. “She’s one of the most upbeat people you’ll ever meet.”
Karen Garcia’s family told FOX40 last week the 19-year-old’s death was “probably just so hard” for the grieving sister to comprehend.
She told a friend she was going to either Roseville or Vacaville to go shopping to clear her head after her younger sister, along with her four friends, were killed in a crash, according to Williams police.
When Garcia didn’t show up that night for her sister’s vigil, her family reported her missing.
Someone called officers about 3:45 p.m. Sunday about a body inside a parked car in a Marshalls parking lot.
Detectives determined the car was Garcia’s, and it was the missing woman inside.
Karen Garcia and her mother worked at Granzella’s Deli Restaurant in Williams.
“Karen was very well liked. Very respectful. She didn’t have an enemy,” General Manager Dino McCarty said. “Always kind, always a smile on her face. Always happy. A great spirit.”
Colusa Police searched the home of Salvador Garcia, Jr. and found evidence of a homicide. He is Karen Garcia’s ex-boyfriend and the father of her 2-year-old daughter, Colusa Police Chief Josh Fitch said, adding the two lived together.
The 2-year-old girl is with Karen Garcia’s mother, according to Fitch.
Investigators believe Karen Garcia was killed on Jan. 8, but her body wasn’t found for days.
No additional details about how Karen Garcia was killed have been released.
This is the second tragedy for Karen Garcia’s family in a week.
Her sister, 19-year-old Jessica Garcia, was one of five people killed when a wrong-way driver slammed into their vehicle about 12:30 a.m. Sunday, Jan. 7, on I-5 in the town of Yolo as the group was on their way home from dinner.
“We are praying for Jessica and now what happened to Karen– I don’t understand,” Jose Martin-Vega said, a cousin of the sisters. “What person would do this, when someone has already died, and then to cause another death?”
The close-knit Williams community has lost six lives under the age of 25 in less than a week.
“Everyone is kind of devastated right now,” Williams resident Benjamin Perez said. “There’s a lot of family who lost a lot of friends, so everyone is pretty shook up”
“We are trying to come together. We are trying to lean on each other and give hugs,” McCarty said. “Everybody knows everybody here in this small community. So it’s very tough, very tough.”
The Refuge Restaurant and Bar is hosting a taco fundraiser, Tuesday, Jan.16 at 11:30 am-until closing. All proceeds, donations and tips will go to the families affected by both tragedies.
“Money doesn’t bring people back, at least it’d be able to help support em,” The Refuge bartender, Abel Godoy.
Granzella’s will hold a spaghetti fundraiser on Monday, Jan. 22 to raise money for Karen and Jessica Garcia’s funerals.
“Two losses. Great losses,” McCarty said. “We’re not sure how Gloria—or any mother could handle that.”
This is too much for any parent to have to bear. What’s the motive behind him killing her? Because she left him?
Salvador Garcia Jr’s Interview
Whats up with the baseball cap? Like really?