Murder Suspect Cut Off Monitor After Attack

( – American families suffer tremendous consequences of congressional and presidential inaction on the ever-expanding front lines of the nation’s border crisis. Such is the tragic case of a Texas girl who recently died, allegedly at the hands of two illegal migrants, one of whom was wearing an ankle monitor when she was killed. He later cut it off.

On Wednesday, June 19, Texas media outlets erupted with the news that police officers responding to 911 calls discovered the body of a young girl in a north Houston creek on Monday. By Tuesday, the medical examiner’s office had ruled that she had died from strangulation. Meanwhile, investigators released surveillance photographs from a local 7-Eleven convenience store. The images showed two persons of interest, wanted for questioning by the police in connection with the child’s murder.

The following day, law enforcement officials identified the victim as 12-year-old Jocelyn Nungaray. Police officers located the two suspects on Thursday and quickly placed them under arrest. Later that day, they identified them as 26-year-old Franklin Pena and Johan Jose Martinez-Rangel, 22.

Newly acquired surveillance video showed the two men walking with Nungaray to the 7-Eleven. Court documents later confirmed that all three walked to a nearby bridge. The suspects allegedly assaulted her for over two hours.

Then, Martinez-Rangel reportedly put his arm around Nungaray’s neck and covered her mouth, killing her. Pena told police detectives he tried unsuccessfully to get his accomplice to stop hurting her. Afterward, Martinez-Rangel allegedly tied the girl’s hands behind her back and instructed Pena to dump her body in the water to remove any trace evidence.

News outlets reported that Border Patrol agents apprehended Martinez-Rangel on March 14 and Pena two weeks later in El Paso. Officials released both men with ankle monitors, pending further immigration proceedings.

Martinez-Rangel had his monitor removed in May after immigration officials determined he didn’t have a known criminal history. Pena removed his two days after police officers located Nungaray’s body.

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