Girl was stabbed 2 times
Rebbeca Aramburo was seen alive and moving inside a tent early Friday when police first contacted her mother and the woman’s boyfriend, investigators confirmed Wednesday.
But by the time a police standoff ended at Campground by the Lake more than nine hours later, Rebbecca’s small body showed signs of rigor mortis. The girl’s mother, Lisa Ann Platz, and 35-year-old James Csucsai face capital murder charges in connection with her death.
An autopsy conducted Tuesday in Auburn, Calif., showed the 9-year-old girl kidnapped from Lakewood, Wash., suffered two neck wounds. The estimated time of death was not released, and further tests are pending.
“We still don’t know the exact cause of death,” said Detective Tom Hill, coroner for El Dorado County Sheriff’s Department’s Tahoe Substation. “There are a couple of ways she could have died associated with the incisive wounds in the neck. They were deep, very deep.”
Platz, 32, and Csucsai were found inside the tent with several bloody knives when officers moved in about 10:40 a.m. Friday. Some of the blood pooled on the tent floor came from Platz and Csucsai, who were found with slashes on their wrists. Csucsai’s neck also was cut, but both adults survived their injuries and remain in El Dorado County jail without bail.
While both Platz and Csucsai are charged with murder, investigators have not indicated a possible motive or who they believe killed Rebbeca.
Attorneys expect to receive hundreds of pages of police reports before Platz and Csucsai are arraigned on murder charges Oct. 25. Platz was assigned a public defender this week, while Csucsai has retained a defense attorney from Elk Grove, Calif.
The pair also will be arraigned Oct. 4 on a kidnapping warrant from Pierce County, Wash., which was issued after Rebbeca was taken at gunpoint Aug. 13 from a relative’s Lakewood home.
Rebbeca’s father, Jose, told The News Tribune, of Tacoma, Wash., that the kidnapping was not the first time his daughter had disappeared. He said Rebbeca’s spring break visit with Platz lasted three months, only ending when officers located Platz and his daughter in San Diego in June. Platz was extradited to Washington and jailed on a charge of custodial interference, but she was out on bail when her daughter was kidnapped.
Friday’s events began after police got word the FBI was looking for a 1995 Nissan Maxima en route to South Lake Tahoe. Officers discovered the car with Ohio license plates next to a tent at the campground about 1 a.m. They evacuated the campground and closed U.S. Highway 50 as they tried to negotiate with Csucsai, who police said indicated he was armed. Two pistols and a rifle were confiscated from the Nissan, but no guns were found inside the tent.
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