Keishla Rodríguez Ortiz and her unborn child were found dead on Saturday in the San Jose Lagoon. A day later, Verdejo, who was participating in the 2012 Olympics, was arrested and charged with kidnapping, carjacking and homicide.
CNN has approached Verdejo’s lawyers for comment.
“I commend our partners in the FBI, the Puerto Rico Police Bureau and the Puerto Rico Department of Justice for their dedicated and tireless efforts that led to the indictment and arrest of the accused,” said US attorney W. Stephen Muldrow. “We will continue to work towards ending gender-based violence and offer our deepest condolences to the victim’s family.”
Although some of the charges include a maximum death penalty, it is not known whether federal prosecutors will pursue the death penalty in this case.
A witness told authorities that Verdejo contacted him to assist in the termination of the pregnancy after Rodríguez Ortiz told him she had taken a pregnancy test and, according to the complaint, was expecting his child.
Verdejo and the witness, who is not named in the complaint, met her near her home. After an interview, Verdejo hit Rodríguez Ortiz in the face, injected her with a syringe, and both he and the witness held her arms and feet with wire, the complaint said.
Verdejo and the witness then drove both his and Rodríguez Ortiz’s car to the Teodoro Moscoso Bridge over the San Jose Lagoon. There they threw her into the water, with Verdejo shooting the victim from the bridge, the complaint alleges.
“I congratulate the police officers, prosecutors and forensics staff who are the only team who work tirelessly and with the greatest dedication to resolve Keishla’s case in an agile and precise manner,” said Antonio López, Puerto Rico Police Commissioner. “Our commitment to her family has been to do Keishla justice from day one, and we have already begun.”
CNN’s Jamiel Lynch and Gregory Lemos contributed to this report.