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Whittier Shooting, Kidnapping: Autopsy of Andrea Vazquez, 19, Complete as Murder Investigation Continues After Suspect's Arrest

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Source: facebook

Loved ones are mourning the tragic loss of Andrea Vazquez.

Aug. 25 2023, Published 5:00 p.m. ET

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The autopsy of Andrea Vazquez, a missing 19-year-old California woman who was tragically found dead in what police believe was a random attack, is now completed, RadarOnline.com can exclusively reveal.

The Riverside County Coroner's Office confirmed the examination of Vazquez was conducted on Thursday, August 24, as scheduled. The coroner investigates and reports on all violent, sudden, or unusual deaths of persons within the county, per California law.

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whittier shooting kidnapping andrea vazquez autopsy complete
Source: Whittier Police Department;@virgh0ul/twitter

Her body was found on August 21.

A cause of death has not yet been disclosed amid the ongoing investigation into the shooting-kidnapping incident.

"It's a pain nobody deserves. She was my everything," Vazquez's mother, Anna Vazquez, told CBS Los Angeles.

On Monday, the suspected gunman, Gabriel Esparza, a 20-year-old Whittier resident, was brought into custody around 3 PM after being arrested at his Lakeview workplace.

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Source: Whittier Police Department

Police have charged Gabriel Esparza with her murder.

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He has been hit with seven charges including one count of murder, one count of willful, deliberate and premeditated, attempted murder; one count of kidnapping to commit rape; one count of kidnapping; one count of assault with intent to commit rape; and two counts of attempted forcible rape, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office.

"Additionally, special circumstances of murder during the course of a kidnapping and murder during the course of an attempted rape are alleged," it was stated.

Vazquez's remains were later discovered in a vegetation field off Alessandro Boulevard and Merwin Street in Moreno Valley around 11:50 PM on Monday.

It was a heartbreaking development in the case after Vazquez and her boyfriend were targeted just after midnight on Sunday. There is no known connection between the suspect and victim, and police believe they were chosen at random.

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andrea vasquez missing sign
Source: Whittier Police Department

Friends of Vazquez shared her missing person's report to help investigators.

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At the time, the pair were sitting in a parked car at Penn Park in Whittier when the suspect approached and opened fire.

Esparza allegedly kidnapped Vasquez from the scene and drove off with her in the bed of his pickup truck. He is believed to have driven her to a remote area of Moreno Valley in Riverside County, where he allegedly attempted to rape her before dumping her body in a field, a press release stated.

Esparza pleaded not guilty at an arraignment and is being held on no bail.

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Source: twitter

The community is devastated by her tragic murder.

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If convicted of the charges, Esparza faces a maximum penalty of life without the possibility of parole.

Since the horrific tragedy, a GoFundMe for her grieving loved ones has raised nearly $40k as of Friday.

"She was my best friend," Vazquez's older sister, Edlyn Vazquez, shared of her beloved sibling.

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