Girl buried in 1993 as 'Baby Hope' gets headstone with her name

Nov. 16, 2013 at 1:00 AM
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NEW YORK, Nov. 16 (UPI) -- A 4-year-old murder victim buried in 1993 in New York as "Baby Hope" got a headstone Friday with her name, Anjelica Castillo.

The unveiling ceremony at St. Raymond's Cemetery in The Bronx was attended by Anjelica's mother, Margarita Castillo, other family members and the detectives who investigated the killing, the New York Daily News reported. The Rev. Rudy Gonzalez, the priest at the little girl's funeral 20 years ago, blessed the headstone.

Anjelica's body was found stuffed in a cooler near the Henry Hudson Parkway in northern Manhattan in 1991. Police were unable to identify her at the time, and detectives paid for her funeral and a headstone that read "Baby Hope."

The girl was identified earlier this year. Conrado Juarez, 52, a cousin, was charged with the killing and allegedly admitted it to police.

Juarez is awaiting trial.

Margarita Castillo placed candles on her daughter's grave Friday and stood beside it praying and crying. She did not speak to the news media.

Detective Jerry Giorgio, now retired, said he is happy police were able to identify Baby Hope and to find out what happened to her.

The new stone still calls Anjelica "Baby Hope." Underneath it reads "Identified in 2013 as Anjelica Castillo -- Born April 24, 1987 -- Because We Care."

Gonzalez said the girl's name was appropriate.

"To show you that her name is Anjelica is unbelievable," the priest said. "That means angel, and that's what everybody felt back then -- that she was an angel."

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