New details released by Miya Marcano's family about night of disappearance

The family of Miya Marcano has released new details about the night of her disappearance, including their interactions with the person of interest in the case and Orange County deputies.

Miya Marcano was last seen around 3 p.m. on Friday, September 24th, at the Arden Villas apartment in Orlando. The person of interest in her disappearance, 27-year-old Armando Manuel Caballero, was found dead from an apparent suicide the following Monday. Then, on Saturday, Miya's body was discovered at the Tymber Skan condos. According to the family's lawyer, Miya was found bound with tape over her mouth and wrists. 

TIMELINES: Sheriff's Office releases detailed timeline of Miya Marcano's disappearance, death

Her family contacted law enforcement and traveled to the Arden Villas apartment complex shortly after her disappearance.

"After the family discovered that Miya was not on the flight she was scheduled on they immediately contacted the Orange County Sheriff’s Office to conduct a welfare check," the family's lawyer stated in a press release. "Miya’s family knew that something was wrong with Miya. Upon arrival at Miya’s apartment, the deputy waited for Miya’s roommate to arrive to give him access to the apartment."

When they went inside her apartment, the lawyer said the following was discovered: 

  • Miya’s door had a mini dresser that prevented access from the front of her bedroom door
  • Entry into Miya’s room had to be done via her back window
  • The deputy noticed the window had been tampered with

The deputy reportedly found immediate signs of a struggle "but did not consider it to be a crime scene."

RELATED: Protest for better security planned at Miya Marcano's apartment complex

The family said that the deputy on the scene left and they did not hear back with any more information about what was being done. They said that they also called the Arden Villas repeatedly but were never contacted back or returned their e-mails. The family drove from South Florida to check on what was happening. 

When the family arrived at the apartments, they called the sheriff's office to the complex to give them access to Miya's room. 

"Upon entering Miya’s room, they found a box cutter under a rug that didn’t belong to Miya. A short time later, Armando Caballero arrived in front of Miya’s apartment and asked Miya’s aunt ‘are you looking for Miya?’ This was approximately 4:00 a.m. Caballero was off work and had no reason for being at the Arden Villas."

Miya Marcano, 19, was reported missing after she did not board a scheduled flight from Orlando to Ft. Lauderdale on Friday, Sept. 24, 2021.

"Not wanting the scene to be contaminated, the security guard on duty attempted to give the fingerprints he lifted from Miya’s window to the deputies but was told by the deputies to keep them as he chuckled and said, ‘this isn’t a high priority case.’"

The family said they immediately knew Caballero had something to do with their daughter’s disappearance. 

"They reported to the deputy who was now on scene that a key FOB dropped out of Caballero’s lap as he got out of the car, he had Miya’s blanket and a black backpack in his car and the family caught him in several lies regarding his encounters with Miya."

In a video released by the family's lawyer, Miya's family confronts the person speaking to deputies who they say is Caballero. The family says that Caballero sent Miya money at one point but she returned it to him. 

He reportedly claimed that he did not send any money.

RELATED: Miya Marcano case: New video shows what appears to be man carrying Miya’s blanket

"This was the family’s first encounter with the man who killed their daughter," the family's lawyer said in a news release. 

The deputy then lets the man in the video leave. 

The family says they had a second encounter with Caballero later that morning and said they witnessed Caballero with their daughter’s blanket going into the apartment where he lived. A deputy was called but reportedly did not enter his apartment – but instead allowed a member of the public to enter to search for Miya. 

Miya Marcano, 19, was reported missing after she did not board a scheduled flight from Orlando to Ft. Lauderdale on Friday, Sept. 24, 2021.

When the family asked Miya's apartment complex to review the security cameras and key FOB, they were reportedly told the police would have to request that information.

RELATED: Miya Marcano's body positively identified, medical examiner says

"What’s more disappointing is that the deputy told the family that if they had not heard from their daughter by Tuesday, they would come out and view the cameras and read the key FOB."

"It was discovered that office management didn’t know how to properly read the key fob and the family didn’t know that Caballero had actually entered their daughter’s apartment until that Sunday," the news release states. "This is when Caballero finally became a ‘person of interest.’ Caballero was found dead early Monday morning."
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