WINDSOR HILLS (CBSLA) — Julian Benitez prayed during a vigil Sunday night for the safe return of his daughter Alora Benitez, who has been missing since last Wednesday.
The 15-year-old Benitez of Redondo Beach has been missing since her mother and her mother’s ex-husband, who have been accused of murder,went on the run.
Alora was last seen getting into a BMW with 40-year-old Maricela Mercado and 39-year-old Roman Cerratos on Wednesday morning. The car was found abandoned in San Diego County near the border with Mexico on Friday, but Alora and the couple have not been seen.
“I’m overwhelmed by what’s going on,” Benitez said. “It’s surreal. It’s what you see in the movies. This is unbelievable.”
Mercado and Cerratos are the suspects in the killing of a man found dead in Carson last Tuesday.
“For Roman or Mari, if you guys are listening, do the right thing, turn Alora over,” Benitez said. “This is your guys’ mess. Not hers.”
Because Alora was last seen with the couple, she became subject of an Amber Alert. Fliers went out with pictures of the girl, with brown hair, brown eyes, about 5-foot-2 and a hundred pounds.
Benitez shared a message with his daughter saying, “If Alora watches this. Run to safety if you can. Go somewhere if there’s a phone. Call authorities. Go somewhere in public where a lot of people. Call for help. Ask for help.”