SAN DIEGO – The sister of Anna Hernandez, a 14-year-old girl found shot to death last week, spoke to FOX 5 Wednesday about her family's frustrations with how they felt police were slow to react to their cries for help.
Anna was found dead in an open area off the 2900 block of Market Street in Grant Hill on Nov. 18, according to San Diego police. An autopsy determined that she died from at least one gunshot wound to her upper body, Lt. Mike Hastings said. The teen had gone missing five days before her body was found.
Sources close to the investigation confirmed Wednesday that Anna was sexually assaulted on Sept. 21 in Mountain View. Two male juveniles were taken into custody for the alleged violent attack.
According to Anna’s family members, there were more people involved in the assault. Her family says they knew something was wrong when Anna disappeared Nov. 13 and feel baffled as to why police never responded to their missing person crisis.
Anna’s sister, Miriam Yocupicio, said she received a distress call from Anna the day she went missing, but was unable to convince police she was in danger and needed to be found.
“I called the police…Nobody came to the house,” she said.
She said she felt helpless when investigators told her, “they couldn’t do anything because they’re considering it a runaway.”
Yocupicio says she feels numb, but her community keeps her family going.
“I just want to thank everybody that’s been here supporting my family, gathering funds for the funeral,” she said.
The family continues to plead for information about exactly what happened.
Authorities have not announced any arrests in the case or released suspect information.
One of Anna's friends, 12-year-old Nelly Espinoza, ran away the same day. It was unclear if the two left their respective homes together.
"We received information Nelly called a family member and said she was fine and if anyone tried to look for her she would flee deeper into Mexico," said Lt. Mike Hastings, San Diego Police homicide unit. "As part of our investigation, we will determine whether there is correlation between Nelly running away and Anna’s death."
Police also released a picture of 16-year-old Janeth Mendoza, another teen who was reported missing since October 28. She was last seen near the 3000 block of Webster Street. Mendoza is 5-feet, 5-inches tall, 160 pounds, has black hair and brown eyes. Police said she has a Charger bolt tattoo on her neck and "Bella" on her right forearm and "Perla" on her left.
Police asked anyone with information on Espinoza's or Mendoza's whereabouts to call Officer Jose Mendoza at 619-744-9518.
Grieving relatives and friends of the slain teenager held a vigil in her memory Tuesday night at a church a few blocks from the canyon where her body was discovered, wrapped in a blanket.