Body Recovered from Delta-Mendota Canal

Saturday, Feb 12, 2011  |  Updated 6:18 PM PDT
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Body Recovered from Delta-Mendota Canal

NBC

West Hartford Police are still investigating a sexual assault that happened on Fern Street in October.

A body was discovered floating in the Delta-Mendota Canal this morning by an employee of the San Luis & Delta-Mendota Water Authority.

According to the Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department, the body of an adult Hispanic male was found near Gate #9 of Fink Road South of the city of Patterson. The physical clothing description matches that of suspected kidnapper Jose Rodriguez, who is suspected of kidnapping four-year-old Juliani Cardenas and then driving into the Delta-Mendota Canal.

Cardenas’ body was recovered on February 4th.

“[Rodriguez] has a criminal history, for a conviction in manslaughter and a conviction with a sexual encounter with a minor,” said Sheriff Adam Christianson of the Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department.

Gate #9 is located approximately 11 miles south of the location where detectives determined that Rodriguez drove his car into the canal with Juliani after kidnapping Juliani from his grandmother on January 18, 2011.

An autopsy is tentatively scheduled for Tuesday at the Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department Coroner’s Division. Positive identification will be made through evidence recovery, dental records and/or DNA.

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