Sheriff talks about border security challenges in murder case

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wwltv.com

Posted on July 14, 2014 at 10:15 PM

Updated Monday, Jul 14 at 10:42 PM

Tania Dall / Eyewitness News
Email: tdall@wwltv.com | Twitter: @taniadall

NEW ORLEANS -- A man accused of killing his young girlfriend in Metairie was tracked down in Texas after fleeing Louisiana with three kids in tow.

According to Jefferson Parish Sheriff Newell Normand, the case highlights the challenges with U.S. border security.

A Metairie woman woke up to frantic knocks on her door early Sunday morning.

"'Wake up! Wake up. There was a murder.' Then I said: 'who, who?' He said: 'The neighbor you were helping out. You were giving food to,'" she said.

The woman asked not to be identified, but she said she'd been giving her new neighbors whatever she could to help out.

"When I noticed the amount of kids that she had, I was concerned about them. From glancing in the house they didn't have so much," said the woman.

Authorities confirm that young mother was 24-year-old Heidi Monroy. She was found dead in a bathtub early Sunday morning after her kids ran to a neighbor for help.

The Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office is now charging Monroy's boyfriend, Pedro Monterosso-Navas, with second-degree murder.

He fled to Texas with three of his kids but was arrested on Monday after one of his kids was able to call a friend.

"I heard today that they've been found. God heard my prayers," said the woman.

Neighbors also tell Eyewitness News the Honduran family moved to the apartment complex in the 4000 block of Durand Street about two or three weeks ago.

"He came across the border through Mexico. He's here illegally, the best that we can determine. It's got a lot of twist and turns," Normand said in an exclusive interview with Eyewitness News about the case Monday night.

Although Navas, also known as Wilson Rigoberto Mena, is now in custody, Normand confirms he had a Guatemalan passport on him despite being from Honduras.

Normand said detectives are questioning witnesses in Texas. The Honduran government and U.S. immigration officials are also in the loop to figure out who their primary suspect really is.

"It does create pause as it relates to the safety and security of our borders and the issues that we're dealing with that we see on the national news each and every day. We're living it with this case," Normand said.

As multiple agencies try tackling this complex murder case, one neighbor is praying for the youngest victims who won over her heart.

"God's will, I hope they all come back together, and if they're able to stay here in the states, someone would take them all in," the neighbor said.

The Jefferson Parish Coroner's Office confirmed Monday that Monroy died from blunt force trauma to the head.

The sheriff's office says Monterosso-Navas is expected to be extradited to Louisiana.

As for those kids, neighbors say the two found in Metairie were picked up by law enforcement officials. No word on where those three others kids are being housed in Texas.

 

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