(GREENWICH, Conn.) — An ex-boyfriend has been arrested in connection to the death of 24-year-old Valerie Reyes, whose body was discovered bound in a suitcase on the side of the road, according to police.
Javier Da Silva, 24, was interviewed and allegedly “admitted a role” in Reyes’ death, Greenwich Police Capt. Robert Berry said Tuesday.
In the interview, Da Silva allegedly said he and Reyes had sex at her home around Jan. 29. At some point, “the victim fell to the floor and hit her head,” according to the criminal complaint.
Da Silva allegedly said he put packing tape over her mouth, bound her legs and hands, put her in a suitcase, drove away and then ditched the suitcase in a forest, the criminal complaint said.
He also allegedly used Reyes’ ATM card after she was killed, Berry said, noting that investigators “saw continued ATM activity and that’s what zeroed us in.”
Reyes’ body was found on Feb. 5 along a Greenwich, Connecticut, road with “obvious signs of head trauma,” the criminal complaint said.
An autopsy ruled Reyes’ death a homicide, the criminal complaint said.
Da Silva was arrested Monday night in Queens, New York, according to police, and charged with kidnapping resulting in death.
Da Silva, a citizen of Portugal, entered the U.S. in May 2017 through the Visa Waiver Program, but he overstayed his visa, officials from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) said Wednesday.
ICE has lodged a detainer, and pursuant to the detainer, ICE said it will aim to take custody of him for immediate removal when he is released from criminal custody.
He is the only suspect identified as this time, though the investigation is ongoing, Berry told reporters Tuesday afternoon.
Da Silva appeared briefly Tuesday before a federal magistrate in White Plains who ordered him held on no bail. He was not required to enter a plea.
Reyes was last seen on Jan. 29. She was reported missing to the New Rochelle Police on Jan. 30 by her mother, father and boyfriend, according to the criminal complaint.
According to the criminal complaint, Reyes’ family told police she had dated a man named Javier and that relationship ended about one year ago.
Reyes’ mother, Norma Sanchez, told ABC New York station WABC-TV on Tuesday, “They released his name — my heart dropped.”
“Emotions of so much anger and hate, but relieved,” she said.
Greenwich Police ask anyone with information about Reyes or her disappearance to call the Greenwich Police Tip Line at (203) 622-3333 or email at Tips@greenwichct.org.
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