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Sierra LaMar case: Suspect's sister denies her brother's involvement in the teen's disappearance

Sierra LaMar has been missing since March, but her suspected kidnapper's sister says that 21-year-old Antolin Garcia Torres is not responsible for the crime.

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Sierra LaMar's mother Marlene speaks to reporters at a press conference Tuesday. Her daughter, who went missing on her way to school in March, is suspected to have been murdered by 21-year-old Antolin Garcia Torres. (Screenshot/Screengrab)

LOS ANGELES — A suspect in Sierra LaMar's disappearance and possible murder was arrested by Santa Clara police Monday, but the suspect's sister told the San Jose Mercury News Tuesday that her brother is not responsible for the missing teenager.  

"It's not him," said Lucero Garcia, whose younger brother Antolin Garcia Torres is in custody.

Police discovered evidence of Garcia Torres' DNA on LaMar's belongings that were found on the side of the road near her home after her mother reported her missing, according to the Mercury News.

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"I honestly feel they don't have enough evidence to convict him," Garcia, 26, told the Mercury News, and said that though she realizes what family members of criminal suspects seem like when they speak out, called her brother's arrest "unfair." 

LaMar, a cheerleader and high school student from Morgan Hill, California, has been missing since March 17, according to the LA Times.

Santa Clara County Sheriff Laurie Smith told reporters earlier on Tuesday that investigators have "direct and circumstantial" evidence that Garcia Torres killed LaMar, according to the Los Angeles Times

Isovet Martinez, Garcia's boyfriend, told the Mercury News that Garcia Torres is just being considered a suspect "because of his image, but image isn't anything."

The Garcia Torres' family has sent their best wishes to the LaMars', according to the Times. 

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Antolin Garcia Torres is married with a young daughter, and his wife is three months pregnant, according to his sister. 

"It feels like we're in a movie right now, an unfair movie," Garcia told the Mercury News. 

According to the US Department of Justice, 797,500 children younger than 18 are reported missing a year in the United States, with an average of 2,185 children being reported missing each day. 

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/united-states/120522/sierra-lamar-suspect-sister-denies-involvement