MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The death of a 19-year-old woman has sent shockwaves through a close Minneapolis community.

A memorial is growing in the Powderhorn neighborhood, where Yadhira Romero Martinez was found dead on Friday. Police initially called her death suspicious.

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A welfare check initially brought Minneapolis police to a home on Lake Street and 18th Avenue. Inside, they found Romero Martinez’s body, and evidence that led them to believe someone killed her.

Yadhira Romero Martinez (credit: GoFundMe)

Cesar Vences didn’t know the young victim personally, but says the Hispanic community who live and work along Lake Street in south Minneapolis is very close.

“It breaks my heart seeing just a Hispanic woman, lady, that gets her life taken away, you know, without doing nothing, without harming nobody,” Vences said. “We’re all brothers and sisters and … nobody deserves to get their life taken away for no reason.”

From what Vences learned from his community, Romero Martinez immigrated to Minnesota from Mexico for a better life, while working to send money back home.

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“Why do these things have to happen, you know, to a young lady that just comes from Mexico to work and support her family?” Vences said.

(credit: CBS)

Police identified a suspect after speaking with the victim’s family, and then obtained an emergency arrest warrant for a 23-year-old suspect. He was located and arrested by the Ohio State Highway Patrol within eight hours of being named a suspect. His extradition back to Minnesota is in the works.

But an arrest doesn’t put Vences at ease, who worries about his own daughter’s safety even more now.

“I got a daughter, she’s 11,” he said. “Imagine that.”

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This is the 23rd homicide in Minneapolis this year. Two GoFundMe accounts have been set up for Romero Martinez’s family: One for her mother’s side of the family and one for her father’s side of the family. They are raising money to bring her back home to Mexico to be laid to rest.

Marielle Mohs