SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — A 27-year-old woman whose body was found in a lagoon was the lover of Puerto Rican boxer Félix Verdejo, who has been questioned by police and whose car was seized overnight, authorities said Sunday.
No one has been arrested in the case, and Verdejo and his attorneys have declined comment. Police have said that Verdejo did not cooperate and refused to answer questions.
Puerto Rico’s Institute of Forensic Science said in a statement that Keishla Rodríguez was identified via dental records, and that officials are still analyzing Verdejo’s car.
Rodríguez’s family has said she was pregnant with Verdejo’s child. Keila Ortiz, the victim’s mother, told reporters that her daughter had called her before she vanished on Thursday and told her Verdejo was going to her house to see the results of a pregnancy test.
“I told her, be careful, because he had already threatened her'' and told her not to have the baby, mentioning his career and family, she said.
Verdejo is married but has known Rodríguez since middle school and had kept in touch with her, her parents said. They reported her missing after she never showed up to work at an animal grooming business.
Verdejo (27-2, 17 knockouts) is a former Olympian who represented Puerto Rico in 2012, the same year he became a professional boxer competing in the lightweight division. His career was temporarily sidetracked after a 2016 motorcycle accident that saw him hospitalized.
The case has outraged many in Puerto Rico, where another woman was recently found burned to death after she filed a domestic violence complaint that a judge dismissed. A Superior Court judge has announced an investigation into that decision.
Hundreds of people gathered Sunday at a bridge that crosses the lagoon where Rodríguez's body was found to demand justice for her and other women killed, with some throwing flowers into the water below.