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Migrant in US illegally was previously deported prior to allegedly killing woman: ICE

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(NEW YORK) — The man accused of murdering a Maryland woman in 2023 is an undocumented immigrant who was arrested and expelled at least three times, according to an ICE official.

Victor Antonio Martinez-Hernandez is accused of murdering Rachel Morin in August of 2023. He was arrested last week by authorities in Oklahoma and sent to Maryland to stand trial on murder charges.

Martinez-Hernandez, who is from El Salvador, entered the country on Jan. 19, 2023, near Santa Teresa, New Mexico. He was expelled on Jan. 31, 2024, near El Paso, and again near New Mexico on Feb. 6 under the Title 42 authority.

Title 42, a Trump-era policy that expelled migrants under the auspices of a public health emergency, was phased out in May of 2023 by the Biden Administration.

An ICE spokesperson said that Martinez-Hernandez was placed on an ICE detainer with the Tulsa County Jail before being extradited to Maryland to face charges.

“On June 14, officers from the Tulsa, Oklahoma, police department and agents from the FBI arrested Victor Antonio Martinez-Hernandez, a 23-year-old unlawfully present Salvadoran national wanted by authorities in Harford County, Maryland, for the Aug. 6, 2023, murder of Rachel Morin. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement lodged an immigration detainer against Martinez-Hernandez with the Tulsa County Jail June 15, 2024,” ICE Spokesperson James Covington said in a statement.

“On June 20, 2024, authorities in Tulsa, Oklahoma, successfully extradited Martinez-Hernandez to Harford County, Maryland. Martinez-Hernandez currently remains in the Harford County Jail pending trial,” he added.

ABC wasn’t immediately able to find a legal representative for Martinez-Hernandez.

Morin, a 37-year-old mother of five, was found dead on a hiking trail in Bel Air, Maryland on Aug. 6, 2023, a day after her boyfriend reported her missing.

Martinez-Hernandez was found and arrested after a 10-month search, which involved using DNA evidence to track him down.

Investigators said they believe Martinez-Hernandez attacked Morin while she was hiking, dragged her through a wooded area, then killed her in a nearby drainage culvert.

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