A person of interest is in custody after Hayward police found the body of a young San Jose mother, who was last seen leaving a party Feb. 14, riddled with gunshot wounds.
Police say Stacey Xanthe Aguilar's body was found at 12 p.m. Saturday in a rural part of Fremont. They believe the 22-year-old was shot several times in Hayward and her lifeless body was dumped off Morrison Canyon Road.
Aguilar's boyfriend was taken into custody Feb. 16 on a domestic violence charge related to the victim, police said at a press conference Monday.
"He was one of the persons questioned," Hayward Police Chief Diane Urban said. She would not specify, however, whether he is behind bars in connection with Aguilar's death.
The person of interest has been detained on an unrelated charge, police said.
Although confident that they have the right suspect, police do not plan to release identifying information until the Alameda County District Attorney's Office has officially levied charges.
"The people of this community should sleep at night knowing that there is no longer a murderer out there, that this is the right person," Urban said.
Aguilar's official cause of death remains under investigation and the Alameda County Coroner's Bureau is performing an autopsy.
The victim's mother said Monday that she believed her daughter was in an abusive relationship, and had begged her to return to Mexico.
Speaking by phone, Marisol Aguilar did not name the boyfriend but told NBC sister station Telemundo in Spanish: "I didn't know. I didn't know anything. I didn't know he beat her. No one told me. No one told me anything."
Stacey Aguilar's 7-year-old son lives with his grandmother who was deported to Mexico.
"I want all of this to end," a distraught Marisol Aguilar said. "I want my daughter's ashes to be brought to me."
The victim's mother is now trying to obtain a humanitarian visa to the United States so she can return to Mexico with her child's body.
Aguilar, who worked as a waitress in the San Jose area, was last seen at a party in Hayward around 1 a.m. Feb. 14, police said. Her family reported her missing the next day.
A resident of the East Bay house where last weekend's party was held told NBC Bay Area that Aguilar attended the gathering. The woman did not want to be identified, and said she did not know the victim personally, but knew her boyfriend who brought her to the party.
The woman also said the pair left together.