DNA test results have officially confirmed that a kidnapped 15-year-old Romanian girl is dead, prosecutors said on Saturday.
“Laboratory analysis done until now revealed the genetic profile of one person, Alexandra Macesanu,” the prosecutor’s office for organized crime said in a statement.
Macesanu’s uncle Alexandru Cumpanasu, who has been acting as spokesman for the family, said late on Friday on his Facebook page that the justice minister “had notified my cousin,” on the DNA results.
The 15-year-old was last seen on July 24. On the morning of July 25, she managed to call the emergency services three times, telling them that she had been kidnapped, raped, and was still being held against her will. However, she was not able to give the exact address of her location, and it took police almost 19 hours to intervene.
A 65-year-old man from the southern town of Caracal has been arrested as a suspect in the killing. He confessed to killing Macesanu as well as a second girl, an 18-year-old, who had gone missing in April.
A criminal investigation into charges of rape, murder and trafficking minors is ongoing.
The suspect accompanied the police to his house on Friday in search of evidence. The search was to continue on Saturday. Prosecutors have reportedly found blood stains and bones in his house.
The authorities’ slow response has triggered huge protests in Romania. The outcry has led to several high-level resignations and dismissals.
The country’s interior minister has resigned from his post, while the chief of police and other senior officials were fired. President Klaus Iohannis urged “resignations of all those who mishandled this case which had such dramatic consequences.”
The latest high-profile dismissal was that of the education minister, Ecaterina Andronescu, who was fired after saying: “I was taught not to get into a car with a stranger.”
She later said that she received news of her dismissal from the media and that her intention had not been to blame the victim.
In Caracal, a town of almost 30,000 inhabitants, locals said the case has shattered what little trust they had in the police and made fear part of their daily lives.
“I’m afraid to walk down the streets, you can imagine. We never saw such a thing in our town,” a woman living near the suspect’s house told the Agence France-Presse news agency.
sri/jlw (AFP, Reuters)