A new case of a young woman missing and found dead in Nuevo Leon, Mexico, demonstrates the epidemic of femicides that women and organizations have been denouncing for years in Latin America.
After 13 days of search and investigation, the body of Debanhi Escobar was found last Thursday, April 21, inside a cistern in Nuevo León. The 18-year-old had been seen for the last time on April 9 and had disappeared after attending a party.
According to witnesses and Escobar’s friends, the young woman had left the party when a driver from an app service picked her up on an independent trip to the platform. According to Mexican media reports, in the early hours of April 9, the driver left Escobar in the middle of the Monterrey-Nuevo Laredo highway due to “alleged differences” and took a photograph that went viral on social media.
It was unclear why she got out of the car, but her father, Mario Escobar, said prosecutors told him that surveillance camera footage suggested the driver had touched his daughter inappropriately.
“I suppose that my daughter did not put up with the harassment,” the father said, according to CBS News.
Two days after the young woman’s disappearance, authorities began the search, and the driver of the app was arrested.
Escobar’s body was found in an abandoned cistern inside the Motel Nueva Castilla. Her father confirmed her identity thanks to a crucifix she was wearing.
However, Debanhi Escobar was not the only victim found. During the days when Nuevo Leon authorities conducted investigations, they located seven women reported missing. As explained by El Heraldo de México, five of them were found lifeless.
Nuevo Leon state authorities detailed that the women found in this period are Alexa Elizabeth Ramirez, Danna Ihtalivi Barbosa, Grisela Marcelino Ruiz, Liliana Perez, Maté Garcia, Patricia Coronado and Jaqueline del Rio.
Last Sunday, hundreds of people took to the streets of several cities to denounce the death of Debanhi Escobar and thousands of missing and murdered women throughout Mexico.
“My friends take care of me, not the police!” shouted feminist collectives throughout the streets of the country.