ORLANDO, Fla. - The family of Miya Marcano has responded to the incident report released Friday by the Orange County Sheriff’s Office on her disappearance.
Miya Marcano, 19, was last seen on Friday, September 24, at the Arden Villas apartments in Orlando. The prime suspect in her disappearance and death, 27-year-old Armando Manual Caballero, was found dead from an apparent suicide on Monday, September 27. Her body was discovered after days of searching on Saturday, October 2.
The family of Miya Marcano previously released a recording of a confrontation with Caballero. He denied he was a stalker after one of her relatives said there was evidence of his obsession with Miya. Law enforcement maintains that he was the only person of interest in the case.
The Orange County Sheriff's Office released an incident report on Friday from the night of Miya's disappearance.
Information was redacted throughout the report but outlined the initial circumstances around the Orange County Sheriff's Office response that evening.
In response to the newly-released incident report, Miya Marcano’s family and their attorney on Sunday made the following statement:
"Upon review of the incident report, my team immediately noticed that a large portion of the report was heavily redacted. Additionally, Washington states that there are a number of things in the incident report that conflict with witness statements and the physical evidence. The incident report lacks critical details regarding the condition of the room upon entry and signs that there was a struggle. The incident report does detail the fact that Caballero admitted that he attempted to date Miya, but his advances were rejected by her but leaves out that Deputy Paulino was told by at least two witnesses prior to encountering Caballero that Caballero had been harassing Miya and made her feel uncomfortable. Despite having ample evidence and reasonable suspicion to detain Caballero, Deputy Paulino allowed Caballero to leave the scene. Deputy Paulino’s actions fall below the national standards and for the manner in which he handled the investigation, Washington is calling for Deputy Paulino to be terminated.
"Sheriff Mina, in one of his press conferences, stated that Deputy Paulino could not detain Caballero based on a hunch", essentially ratifying the conduct of his deputy. We believe that Deputy Paulino had more than enough evidence to detain Caballero based on the fact that Caballero had full access to Miya’s room, he admitted that he wanted to date Miya but she declined his advances, he was driving around the Arden Villas at 3 a.m., he stated "why would I be here if I was guilty" but at that time no one had accused him of anything, initially lying about the last time he saw Miya, and the statements he received from witnesses. If Deputy Paulino did not have enough information to detain Caballero during his initial encounter, he most certainly obtained additional evidence that would require him to do so when family members produced videotape of Caballero carrying Miya’s blanket" Attorney Washington continues."
"Had the investigating deputies and management of the Arden Villas simply checked the key fob system when they were provided with credible evidence that Miya was missing, the outcome may have been different. Miya was failed by officials who had the ability to protect her and act with a sense of urgency but did not view this incident as being a priority. Sheriff Mina’s assertion that the way the investigation was handled/mishandled would have not mattered because Miya was already dead is simply ridiculous, without support and a very insensitive statement to have made when Miya’s family and the community were grieving from Miya’s death. We have not been presented with any evidence that confirms the cause of death or the actual place of Miya’s death, says Washington. What we do know is that critical hours were lost and if it hadn’t been for this family’s strength and determination we may still be searching for Miya."
A Celebration of Life was held for Miya Marcano on Wednesday in South Florida. Loved ones got the chance to say their final goodbyes to the 19-year-old Valencia College student.
In addition, Miya Marcano’s family has launched the official website for the Miya Marcano Memorial Foundation. It aims to help the families of missing persons.
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