A New Mexico man has been arrested in the death of 5-year-old Renezmae Calzada, whose body was found last month in the Rio Grande River just days after she had disappeared.
Malcolm Torres, who is the ex-boyfriend of Calzada's mother, is now facing second-degree murder charges in the young girl’s death, according to a federal indictment obtained by local station KOAT.
Torres had been watching Calzada when she disappeared on the morning of Sept. 8 and was the last person to see her alive in the front yard of his Española home, authorities said, according to KRQE.
She was reported missing later that night by her mother, Victoria Maestas, who frantically called 911 from work after learning the girl was missing, KRQE reports.
An Amber Alert was issued and a massive search began for Calzada, whose body was discovered in the Rio Grande on Sept. 11.
Torres was arrested Sunday in Pojoaque, just hours after he was released from jail in another case. He had been taken into custody the same night Calzada was reported missing after violating conditions for two DWI charges.
He was sentenced to serve 64 days in jail for violating his probation in that case.
While authorities have released few details into the circumstances of Calzada’s death, court documents obtained by The Albuquerque Journal show that Torres and Maestas had been in a custody dispute involving the young girl and her brother when Calzada disappeared.
Torres had also been arrested in the past after he allegedly beat Maestas and threatened to kill her if she ever took his son away from him, court records said. During the violent dispute, Torres allegedly threw items at her and held a knife to her throat.
Torres is scheduled for his first appearance in U.S. District Court Monday.
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