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Woman's body found in Wheaton shopping center, co-worker charged with murder

Woman’s body found in Wheaton shopping center, co-worker charged with murder

WASHINGTON — The body of a woman found Friday afternoon behind a shopping center on busy University Boulevard West in Wheaton, Maryland, has been identified and her co-worker at a nearby fast-food restaurant is charged with second-degree murder.

Dania Mendez de Guerra, 21, of Wheaton, died of multiple blunt force trauma and asphyxia, according to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner. Her husband reported her missing on Nov. 6 after she failed to return home from her Sunday evening shift at the KFC on University Boulevard West.

Police have arrested Elmer Marilan Campos-Martinez, 47, of Rockville.

“He was a co-worker and when detectives began to investigate the disappearance of this woman, they learned that the victim was in some type of relationship with this suspect,” said Cpl. Rebecca Innocenti, spokeswoman for Montgomery County Police Department.

Police said both Mendez de Guerra and Campos-Martinez were working at the KFC on the evening of Nov. 5. He finished his shift and waited in the area until she finished hers.

“He said that they became involved in some type of verbal argument. He said the victim was upset with him, wanted to end the relationship and that’s when he assaulted her. He stated that she became unresponsive and he fled from the area,” Innocenti said.

Campos-Martinez told police that he punched Mendez de Guerra three times and pushed her to the ground where she hit her head. He’s charged with second degree murder and is being held without bond. Campos-Martinez is expected to make a court appearance Monday.

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