Local dj murdered in Guatemala

The Island Newspaper, Ambergris Caye, Belize            Vol. 16, No. 31            August 3, 2006

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Leslie Maldonado, 21 and a mother of two young children, died tragically in Guatemala.

Shocking news reaching San Pedro left the island dressed in black and in mourning last Wednesday. 21-year-old Leslie Maldonado was found dead at 7:00 a.m. in the Guatemalan village of Melchor. Leslie had been employed as a disc jockey at the Reef Radio in San Pedro for the past nine months and during that time had earned the love and trust of her audience.

    Trying to piece together Leslie’s last hours, along with figuring out the motive behind her death has been a true puzzle. At the time of her death, Leslie was on a week’s holiday and had been scheduled to return to work on Monday. According to family members, during her vacation, Leslie had traveled to Melchor de Mencos, Guatemala, to purchase a vehicle for which she had borrowed $7,000 from a cousin. However, the car was never bought and the money was never found on Leslie. Immigration records show that she crossed the Guatemala-Belize border on Monday at approximately 9:00 a.m.

    On Wednesday, Guatemalan authorities contacted their Belizean counterparts to let them know that a body, believed to be Belizean had been found in a wooded area approximately 1.2 kilometers west of Benque Viejo Town in Guatemalan soil. She had been shot twice, once in the chest and once in the lower right rib cage. However, what officers and family members find disturbing is that Leslie’s clothes did not have any bullet holes; and that she was found fully clothed except for her underwear which was found stuffed in her trouser pocket. The area where she was found did not have any blood as well, indicating that she had been killed elsewhere and then thrown on the street side.

    By midday on Wednesday, family members had traveled to Melchor to identify and bring the body back to Belize. Following funeral services, Leslie was buried on Friday in San Pedro. She is survived by two young children, family and lots of friends who all attended the service to pay their last respects and say their last good bye to the energetic and loved DJ. Rest in peace Leslie, you will surely be missed.

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