A dad came home and found his 11-year-old daughter strangled to deathunderneath her bed.
Police responded to a call from an apartment complex in Pasadena, Texas, at 3pm on Saturday.
When paramedics arrived at the scene the girl – identified as Maria Gonzalez – was found dead at the scene.
The girl’s dad, Carmelo Gonzalez, 32, told Fox 26 he found her sexually assaulted and killed when he returned from work.
He said Maria texted him at 10am that morning to say someone was knocking at their door.
‘I told her, “Don’t open the door because I am arriving at work,” and she responded, “I am in my bed,”‘.
The dad described his daughter as a ‘good, quiet girl’ who only recently turned 11.
Carmelo later asked relatives who live in the same building to go and check on her.
Pasadena police chief Josh Bruegger said during a news conference that her aunt and uncle found the door open but were unable to locate her.
Police do not currently have any suspects and confirmed there was no forced entry into the home.
They have asked the public for information.
Maria’s cause of death has been ruled as asphyxiation due to strangulation and blunt force head and neck trauma.
‘At this point, the father’s alibi checks out, so he is, at this point, not considered a suspect in this investigation,’ Bruegger said.
Bruegger said the dad and daughter had been living in the apartment complex for about three months and the girl’s mum lives in Guatemala.
‘Whoever saw something just after 10am on Saturday at that particular apartment, we’re asking them to come forward with the information they might have,’ he continued.
‘We’re doing our level best to get out and solve this crime.
‘As a parent of an almost-10-year-old myself, it certainly is a cause for concern.’
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