The Dallas Morning News

Death blamed on boyfriend

Family believes woman found in lake strangled after giving 2nd chance

- By DANA BRANHAM Staff Writer dana.branham@dallasnews.com

GRAND PRAIRIE — The family of a Grand Prairie woman found dead last week after she’d been missing for months said they believe that her boyfriend strangled her before dumping her body in Mountain Creek Lake.

The body of Weltzin Garcia Mireles, 26, was spotted at the lake by a kayaker on April 3. The mother of two had been missing since Feb. 5, the day she and her estranged boyfriend, Alfonso Hernandez, disappeare­d.

Hernandez was found dead in White Rock Lake on Feb. 17, apparently having drowned.

The day he and Mireles went missing, police had gotten a warrant signed for his arrest on a family violence charge. He was accused of punching Mireles about two weeks earlier.

Atziry Mireles, Weltzin’s twin sister, told reporters Thursday that police had shared evidence with the family leading them to believe that her sister was strangled by her boyfriend before he dumped her body in the lake, she said.

She said police told them they found blood in her sister’s

room, leading all the way to the garage.

“Now I believe that Alfonso did kill my sister, in a cruel, selfish way,” she said, adding that she believes he killed himself afterward.

Atziry Mireles said she believed her sister gave Hernandez a “second chance” after she told police he hit her.

“That second chance, he took it to take my sister’s life,” she said.

Dallas police, who are leading both death investigat­ions because the bodies were recovered within Dallas city limits, did not respond to questions about whether officials suspected a murdersuic­ide.

The family had posted on Facebook about their disappoint­ment with the Grand Prairie police investigat­ion before Mireles’ body was found, saying that they wanted detectives to explore other explanatio­ns for Mireles’ disappeara­nce besides a murdersuic­ide.

Grand Prairie police spokesman Mark Beseda said detectives had heard those same concerns from the family and told them there was “no evidence to support those theories.”

Atziry Mireles said that had Grand Prairie police told them sooner about the blood found in her sister’s home the day of her disappeara­nce, her family would have had a different perspectiv­e on what happened.

She said she didn’t understand why police didn’t immediatel­y arrest Hernandez after he had been accused of punching Mireles.

Beseda said that on the night of Jan. 14, police were called to Mireles’ and Hernandez’s home about an assault, but Hernandez was nowhere to be found. Had he still been at the scene, he would’ve been arrested right away, Beseda said.

But in situations where there is no history of family violence like in this case, Beseda said, it’s not uncommon for it to take a few weeks to get a warrant signed for a suspect’s arrest.

Beseda said police searched tirelessly for Mireles, deploying boats, dogs and sonar technology to search lakes around the area, including White Rock Lake, where Hernandez was found, and Mountain Creek Lake, where Mireles was found. In a rare move, one detective was assigned full time to the case.

“She was doing nothing but working on this case,” Beseda said. “It was a priority for us. Obviously, it was not the outcome that we wanted.”

 ?? Ryan Michalesko/staff Photograph­er ?? Atziry Mireles, Weltzin Garcia Mireles’ twin sister, says police found blood in her sister’s room leading to the garage.
Ryan Michalesko/staff Photograph­er Atziry Mireles, Weltzin Garcia Mireles’ twin sister, says police found blood in her sister’s room leading to the garage.
 ??  ?? WELTZIN GARCIA MIRELES
WELTZIN GARCIA MIRELES
 ?? Ryan Michalesko/staff Photograph­er ?? Husband Miguel Osornio consoled Atziry Mireles after a meeting Thursday with Grand Prairie police investigat­ors. Her sister’s body was found April 3 in Mountain Creek Lake.
Ryan Michalesko/staff Photograph­er Husband Miguel Osornio consoled Atziry Mireles after a meeting Thursday with Grand Prairie police investigat­ors. Her sister’s body was found April 3 in Mountain Creek Lake.
 ??  ?? ALFONSO HERNANDEZ
ALFONSO HERNANDEZ

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