The charred remains of a vehicle found in Miami Gardens match the description of the car belonging to a Barry University student whose puzzling murder still has not been solved, police said Wednesday.
Miami police said they were alerted to the burning car at Myrtle Grove Elementary School on Tuesday night by a media outlet. Since then, detectives — who have not officially said the car belongs to 19-year-old Priscilla Torres — have been combing its remains for forensics and checking for any nearby surveillance video.
“It matched the description,” said Miami police officer and spokesman Michael Vega. “They haven’t officially said this is, or isn’t, the vehicle.”
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Vega said because of the condition of the car found in the parking lot at 3125 NW 176th St., detectives most likely will need video surveillance or anything found left around the scene to try and determine who abandoned the vehicle and set it on fire.
It wasn’t immediately clear whether police were able to read the license tag on the burned vehicle. The tag on Torres’ missing white Nissan Sentra: HZB U86.
Torres was found face down on the street near the corner of Northwest 29th Avenue and 12th Street with a fatal bullet wound before dawn Saturday morning. She was taken to the hospital where she died.
It took a while to identify Torres because when police found her at 4:30 a.m., she had no cellphone and no type of identification. Miami police were able to identify her shortly after releasing a sketch of her on Sunday afternoon, when Miami Shores police put out a bulletin about a missing Barry University student with a matching description.
Police were also able to confirm that only 10 minutes before her body was discovered, Torres had texted a friend at the Miami Shores school saying she was on her way back to the dorm room.
The shooting death of Torres, who studied sports science at Barry, shocked the tight-knit student body at the small, private university. It has since offered counseling and psychological services to students in need.
“Words fail to express the shock and deep sorrow that we, her Barry family, are experiencing,” Barry University President Sister Linda Bevilacqua said in a statement released last week.