Missing Teen Cheerleader Presumed Murdered; Suspect Arrested

Sierra LaMar Was Murdered, Man Arrested, Say Police
Sierra LaMar (left) and Antolin Garcia-Torres
Ben Margot/AP; Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office/AP

05/22/2012 AT 03:30 PM EDT

A 15-year-old Northern California high school cheerleader who disappeared in March on the way to the bus stop is believed to have been kidnapped and murdered, and a man has been arrested in the case.

"We believe this is the worst kind of crime – a stranger abduction of a young girl," Santa Clara County Sheriff Laurie Smith told a news conference Tuesday.

The body of Sierra LaMar has not been found and authorities have not said how or when she was killed. Smith says only that investigators have "strong facts" LaMar was murdered.

Antolin Garcia-Torres, 21, was arrested Monday night at a Safeway supermarket in Morgan Hill, Calif., 70 miles southeast of San Francisco, and booked for investigation of murder and kidnapping based on evidence that included DNA, says Smith.



At the news conference, Sierra’s mother, Marlene LaMar, begged Garcia-Torres to “come forward and say where she is, and end this nightmare for us as a family.”

Garcia-Torres's sister says police have arrested the wrong man.

"It's not him," Lucero Garcia tells the San Jose Mercury News. "It feels like we're in a movie right now, an unfair movie."
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