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Deputies concerned for safety of missing LA girl; couple sought

By
Clyde Hughes
Alora Benitez is the daughter of one of the adults connected to a homicide case. Photo courtesy Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department
Alora Benitez is the daughter of one of the adults connected to a homicide case. Photo courtesy Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department

April 19 (UPI) -- Authorities in Los Angeles are concerned over the whereabouts of a 15-year-old girl who disappeared this week with two adults wanted in a homicide case.

Alora Benitez was last seen in the Los Angeles suburb of Torrance Wednesday with Roman Cerratos, 39, and Maricela Mercado, 40. Officials said the girl had been living with the two and Mercado is her mother. Both adults are wanted in connection with the death of a 32-year-old man in Carson, Calif., Tuesday.

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Authorities have issued an Amber Alert for Benitez.

"Her family is concerned for her safety," the Amber Alert said of the girl, describing her as a 5-foot-2, Hispanic female.

Authorities said witnesses last saw Cerratos and Mercado in a white BMW with Nevada license plates that read, "MARIMAR." The Los Angeles County Sheriff's department said, though, the plates may have been removed from the car.

Investigators said Cerratos and Mercado should be considered armed and dangerous.

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