Former Fontana man sentenced to 18 years for killing Boyle Heights girl, 17, in 1996

A former Fontana man was sentenced Tuesday to 18 years and eight months in prison for the death of a 17-year-old Boyle Heights girl whose body was found at the bottom of a ravine in Malibu more than two decades ago.

Jose Luis Garcia, now 46, pleaded no contest to voluntary manslaughter in connection with the death of Gladys Arellano, along with one count each of kidnapping and domestic assault involving the teen, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.

Garcia waived his credit for just over 1,000 days he has already spent behind bars since his October 2020 arrest, according to the District Attorney’s Office.

Arellano’s partially clothed body was discovered Jan. 30, 1996, at the bottom of a ravine in the Topanga Canyon area of Malibu, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

An autopsy determined that the teenage girl had been beaten and strangled, according to the sheriff’s department.

“Serology evidence was collected from her body, and a DNA profile was uploaded into state and federal DNA databases as that of an unknown offender,” according to statement released by the sheriff’s department shortly after Garcia’s arrest. “Although an extensive investigation was conducted, no match was identified through the DNA databases and the case remained unsolved.”

MORE INFORMATION: Detectives say DNA links Fontana man to 1996 cold case killing of Boyle Heights teen

A DNA sample was collected and loaded into the state’s DNA database after Garcia was arrested by Los Angeles police officers in 2019 on an unrelated crime, authorities said.

A detective assigned to the Unsolved Case Unit learned of a match of that sample to evidence from the 1996 slaying, sheriff’s Lt. Hugo Reynaga saidshortly after Garcia’s arrest.

Detectives contacted him at his then-residence in Fontana, and obtained a DNA swab, Reynaga said.

Serologists from the sheriff’s crime lab confirmed the DNA match, and the detectives obtained an arrest warrant for Garcia, Reynaga said.

Investigators learned that in 1996, Garcia also lived in Boyle Heights, about a mile from Arellano.

Garcia would have been 19 at the time of killing.

Garcia was subsequently taken into custody in Dallas by a U.S. Marshals Service task force after moving to Texas, according to the sheriff’sdepartment.

Related Articles

Crime and Public Safety |

Victims’ groups hope billboards on LA County cold case murders lead to tips, awareness

Crime and Public Safety |

Man wrongfully convicted of 1983 Long Beach murder receives $3 million settlement

Crime and Public Safety |

Ex-student accused in Northern California stabbing deaths is mentally unfit for trial

Crime and Public Safety |

2 women stabbed in Hollywood — 1 fatally — during dispute in vehicle; 3rd woman arrested

Crime and Public Safety |

FBI hunts for more victims after woman’s Oregon escape

(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *