FALL RIVER, Mass. (WPRI) — With a smile on her face, a teenaged girl accused of stabbing a woman at least 14 times over the weekend appeared in Fall River District Court Monday afternoon to face charges.
Heavenly Arroyo, 15, is accused in the murder of Ana Vázquez, 68.
When her name was called in court, she responded: “That’s me!”
Arroyo – who is being charged as an adult – was arraigned and ordered held without bail.
“She knew she was in court. I don’t believe she knew the seriousness of what was happening,” defense attorney John Geary said.
According to the Bristol County District Attorney’s Office, police responded to an apartment at 220 Johnson St. for an emergency call around 5 p.m. Sunday. On the second floor of the residence, they found a woman suffering from multiple stab wounds.
The woman – identified as Vázquez – was rushed to Charlton Memorial Hospital where, the DA’s Office said, she was pronounced dead.
According to court documents, she had at least 14 stab wounds.
The DA’s office said Arroyo had lived in the apartment with the victim and the victim’s grandson for the past two weeks and is originally from Rochester, New York.
She was taken into custody Sunday night and formally charged with murder Monday morning.
While in custody, Arroyo was talking to herself while walking around the interview room and, according to a police report, was heard saying, “I killed the old lady and I am sorry.”
According to court documents, police obtained security camera footage which they said linked Arroyo to “potential evidence associated with the investigation.”
Eyewitness News reached out to Fall River Superintendent Matthew Malone who said Arroyo was not currently enrolled nor previously enrolled in any Massachusetts school district.
A friend of Vázquez’s who didn’t want to be identified said Vázquez was born in Puerto Rico but has lived in Fall River for some time. She leaves behind seven children and a number of grandchildren.
“She was very well-loved, from her grandchildren and everybody that met her and knew her,” the friend said.
Arroyo is due back in court on Oct. 15.