Documents paint bloody scene, house in 'disarray' when police arrived at residence of dead Rio Rancho girl | KOB 4

Documents paint bloody scene, house in 'disarray' when police arrived at residence of dead Rio Rancho girl

Brittany Costello
August 14, 2018 06:40 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – At a Monday press conference, Rio Rancho police said sexual abuse may have played a factor in their investigation of a 6-year-old girl's death. 


Court documents obtained by KOB on Tuesday more concretely suggest Ariana Romeo appears to have been sexually assaulted, and offer disturbing details of how Ariana was found when investigators first arrived at her home over the weekend.

According to a search warrant affidavit, Ariana did not have pants or underwear on when police arrived, and she had blood on her private areas. There was also blood on a nearby towel, and blood on Ariana's bed and bedsheets.

Officers were initially called around 10:30 a.m. Saturday after her mother, Stephanie Romeo, entered her room and discovered she wasn't breathing.

Investigators say the house was in complete disarray, that multiple hard drives, USB drives and tablets were found, and that there is a "high likelihood of child pornography existing or bring preserved on the computer devices found inside the house," the affidavit states.

Rio Rancho Police have yet to offer many details other than their investigation, but no one has been arrested.

"Until we have probable cause to believe we are sure who our suspect is, then we can pursue charges and make an arrest," officials said on Monday.

And while police are still waiting on an autopsy report, they said there have been past interactions at the residence on the 200 block of Moonstone. There have been 33 interactions involving first responders for various reasons at the home since the start of 2010. 

Officials with the Children, Youth and Families Department said they haven't had any previous interactions related specifically to Ariana and her mother. 


Brittany Costello

Copyright 2019 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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