ZAPOPAN, MEXICO – The body of a teacher reported missing out of Lawrenceville, Georgia was found in Mexico…she had been missing since October of 2021.
A teacher with Benefield Elementary School, Alexandra Morales, had taken personal leave from the school to travel to Zapopan, Mexico to attend to some type of family business.
The family reported Morales was missing on October 30th where she was last seen leaving a concert in Guadalajara, Mexico.
Missing teacher found dead in abandoned rental car https://t.co/0nXSROc0AW
— The Independent (@Independent) November 12, 2021
For nine days her family searched for her until her body was located by police inside of her car on November 9th.
While there have been few details that have emerged surrounding her death, police in Mexico have reported that her boyfriend, Fidel Barragan, has been arrested in connection with her death.
Telemundo in Atlanta interviewed the uncle of Morales, Ostin Cuenca, who asked the US authorities to follow the investigation that is taking place in Mexico. Cuenca believes that the arrest of Barragan is only the beginning and feels that his entire family may be involved in what Mexican authorities report as being a kidnapping.
Missing 24-year-old elementary teacher from Georgia found dead in Mexico, reports say https://t.co/G7Ny7zotoo
— Microsoft News (@microsoftnews) November 12, 2021
Morales was a first-grade teacher at Benefield Elementary School and had touched numerous students with her caring personality. One parent of one of Morales’ students, Maria Palacios, spoke to CBS 4 about the loss of the teacher:
“My heart sank. She was so natural at it and the kids loved her. They had so much fun.”
Palacios spoke of how difficult it was to explain the news that the beloved teacher would not be returning to the school to her six-year-old daughter. She said:
“Before I could get the words out, my daughter was crying already. I had to respond, explaining what it means to not come back, that Ms. Morales was not coming back.”
First-grade teacher who was missing in Mexico is found dead https://t.co/iyL5GkaEPn
— MLive (@MLive) November 12, 2021
Morales had been employed with the school since 2019 and was supposed to be back in school at the beginning of November. Benefield Elementary School Principal Shonda Gipson-Stevens addressed the loss of the teacher in an email sent to parents:
“After notifying our staff members, we made phone calls to the family of students in Ms. Morales’ class so that they could comfort their child.
That said, we know this loss touches many in our school community and we want to support our students and staff members during this difficult time. Our counselors are here to listen, to talk, to assist with the questions, and to help with the emotions that accompany this type of loss.”
Family and friends of Morales set up a GoFundMe page to help the family bring Morales’ body back to the United States so she can be buried here. The organizer of the page, Gabriela Rojas, wrote:
“It comes with a heavy heart to share that Alexandra Morales is no longer with us.
“We appreciate all of your help and efforts during this challenging time. In support of the Morales family, we would like to raise funds to alleviate the financial burden that they will incur throughout this difficult time.
“Alexa was adored by her parents and loved by her two brothers. She had a passion for adventure and traveling around the world was her joy.
She was the most caring teacher to all of her students and her first-grade babies will miss her dearly. She was a loyal friend to many and a proud Sister of our sorority, Sigma Lambda Upsilon/Senoritas Latinas Unidas Sorority, Inc.”
As of now, the GoFundMe page has raised just over $26,000 of the $30,000 goal that has been sent. Comments posted on this page show that Morales truly made a lasting impact on both the students at the school as well as the parents.
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During his podcast, he discussed the consequences of cutting police funds, pointing out how the move has turned into a full-blown “disaster” in Austin, Texas. He also mocked the people who supported the policy as “out of touch and unrealistic.”
In the podcast, Rogan was speaking with comedian Annie Lederman about the homeless crisis in Los Angeles, when she brought up the defund the police movement. Rogan said:
“Cops don’t do anything if someone jumps into someone’s backyard, they don’t arrest them. Like, you have to do like $900 worth of theft before they’ll even arrest you. If they do arrest you, they’ll just put you right back out on the street again.”
Lederman asked a follow-up question:
“And has it always been that way or is this after the defunding?”
Rogan responded by saying:
“After the defunding. The defunding of the police in Austin has been a disaster, too and New York’s been a disaster. It’s terrible everywhere. It’s a terrible idea.”
“Also the idea that you are going to send social workers to handle someone’s domestic violence case is (expletive) bananas! And it’s a lot of people that don’t understand violence that think that’s OK and they have this utopian idea.”
Rogan continued to discuss how defunding the police would lead to increased violence and warlords taking over streets and neighborhoods. He said:
“What’s happening in Mexico could easily happen here with no police presence. People have to understand that.”
After discussing the defunding the police movement, the two discussed the homeless problem more and criticized officials for letting the crisis get worse. Lederman pointed out that there is a program that encourages homeless people to pick up their litter and keep the area around them clean at all times, to which Rogan responded by saying:
“You can’t camp! How about that? Get out of here! Or you gotta figure your life out!”
In the beginning of April, Fox News reported that major cities in parts of the U.S. that slashed their police department funding have seen an uptick in violent crimes over the past year.
Cities such as Los Angeles, Minneapolis, New York City, Portland, and Austin have defunded their departments, leading to officer lay offs, canceled recruiting classes, and a retreat from hiring goals. As these cities were left with small budgets and less support, murder and other violent crimes have sky rocketed.
Violent crime rates in Minneapolis surged in 2020 of the death of George Floyd. Between December 11, 2020 and March 28, 2021, murders in the city rose 46 percent compared with the 13 reported during the same time period the year prior.
In Portland, records show that murders more than tripled year-over-year. Police statistics from July 2020, when the city’s budget cuts were made and February 2021, show homicides skyrocketed 270.6 percent compared to the same time the year prior.
In the first two months of 2021 alone, Portland reported 17 murders, a 1,600 percent increase from the single murder reported during the first two months of 2020. The past year, 2020, was reportedly the deadliest in the city in more than a quarter-century.
Murders in New York City are up 11.8 percent year-to-date as of March 21st, with 75 reported this year compared to the 68 reported from 2020.
The LAPD reported a 38 percent increase in murders in 2020, despite the coronavirus mandates that kept most residents indoors. For 2021, murders are up 28.3 percent as of March 13th, with 77 killings reported this year to date compared to the 60 reported during the same time in 2020.
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