Known initially as "Baby Hope," Castillo's body was found in an ice chest on the side of a Manhattan highway in 1991.
Police, who spent the last 22 years trying to track down the killer of the unnamed little girl, got a major break in the case last July, when an anonymous tipster said she heard someone talking about her murdered sister.
From there, police tracked down Anjelica's sister and mother and identified them as the child's family through a DNA sample. Authorities then discovered that Juarez was visiting their home on the day that Angelica died.
Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly said Juarez confessed to raping and smothering Angelica with a pillow. Juarez's sister, Balvena Juarez Ramirez, helped him dispose of the body. Ramirez has since passed away.
“Over the years the optimism was always there, except the frustration would grow,” said Deputy Chief Joseph J. Reznick, who first worked on the case as a Washington Heights detective commander. “But, you know what, reflecting back on what we named this little girl, Baby Hope, I think that’s the most accurate name we could have come up with. And it worked.”
Baby Hope's real name has since been added to her gravestone at St. Raymond’s Cemetery in the Bronx.
“I’m relieved they caught that madman who killed her," a passerby told the New York Post. "“But what’s most important is that she has a name. Her name is Anjelica. It’s not Baby Hope anymore. God rest her soul.”
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