Ariana Funes-Diaz was a 14-year-old girl, a young teen who had a troubled life, one which had resulted in her living in a group home in Maryland. That hard upbringing convinced her to look for protection elsewhere and she turned to a local chapter of the infamous MS-13 gang. In April of 2019, she participated, along with a number of other members, in a kidnapping and robbery. Perhaps she showed signs of guilt or remorse, as the others believed she was going to go to the police.
So, on April 18th, four people – Cynthia Hernandez-Nucamendi, 14; Josue Fuentes-Ponce, 16; Joel Ernesto Escobar, 17; Edwin Rios, 18 – grabbed Funes-Diaz and brought her to a wooded area behind an apartment complex. Two of the men beat and stabbed her to death, while one taped the murder on his phone, and the girl acted as lookout. Fuentes-Ponce was ordered to be removed from the country in 2017 but he had been released from jail without being deported due to “sanctuary” policies before the murder.