A 32-year-old man has been charged with killing a young Wilmington woman last year in a crime that sparked outrage among residents concerned with violence in their community.
Angel Guevarabello, 32, is scheduled to be arraigned today in Long Beach court on one count of murder in the Jan. 2, 2012 slaying of Cristian "Cristy" Zugey Alvarez, police said. Alvarez, a 28-year-old mother of two children, was discovered under the bushes and behind a large wrought iron fence next to the BNSF train tracks on L Street near Hyatt Avenue.
Police said the Wilmington woman's throat was cut and her pants were pulled down.
Los Angeles police Capt. William Hayes, who heads his department's Robbery-Homicide investigative bureau, declined to release details about the motive for the slaying, saying the circumstances and evidence will be saved for court proceedings. Hayes, captain of the Harbor Division at the time of the slaying, said witness statements and physical evidence led to Guevarabello.
At the time of the killing, a man who lived across the street from where the body was found told the Daily Breeze he heard a woman scream three times about 4:30 a.
Some Wilmington residents said in recent days that they had heard rumors that a suspect was in custody for the killing, but police continued to keep mum about their investigation. Jail records show Guevarabello was arrested Oct. 5. Hayes said the case was related to a domestic violence charge.
Los Angeles County court records show Guevarabello was ordered Oct. 23 by a Long Beach judge to stand trial on a charge of assault with a deadly weapon other than a firearm.
The District Attorney's Office filed the murder charge Jan. 10. Detectives notified Alvarez's family Tuesday evening, Hayes said.
Court records also show Guevarabello -- whose name is also listed as "Guevara Bello" -- was charged on June 10, 2011 with prostitution, battery on a police officer, battery and driving without a license. Four months later, Guevarabello was convicted of the license charge. The other counts were dismissed or not prosecuted.
Guevarabello is being held at county jail on more than $1 million bail.
Besides outrage, Alvarez's death triggered an outpouring of prayer and love. Wilmington residents attended a candlelight vigil, created a makeshift memorial with votive candles, flowers, rosary beads and the young woman's photograph, and donated money to pay for her funeral expenses.
Alvarez grew up in Wilmington, attended Banning High School, lived with her boyfriend and was raising her daughter and son. She worked at a bakery, family members said.
In the weeks that followed, a rash of shootings and homicides in Wilmington resulted in a demand for more police protection. The LAPD increased the number of officers in the area.
Residents also conducted weekly peace marches to retake control of their streets.