Puerto Rican boxer held without bail after discovering his lover is dead

San Juan, Puerto Rico — A federal judge ordered Puerto Rican boxer Felix Verdejo to be detained without bail on Monday after being charged with the death of his 27-year-old pregnant lover whose body was found in the lagoon.

Verdejo was charged with kidnapping and Carjack, resulting in the death of Keishra Rodriguez and the deliberate killing of his foetation. He did not comment at a virtual hearing on Monday, which relied on translators.

“This is a case subject to the death penalty,” said Judge Camille Beres.

Criminal charges filed by the FBI have accused Verdejo of hitting Rodriguez’s face and injecting a syringe containing an unidentified substance purchased in a public housing complex. He then claims to have tied her arms and legs with wires, tied a heavy block to her, then threw her off the bridge at 8:30 am on Thursday and shot her body.

Witnesses who were not identified as helping Verdejo kidnap and kill Rodriguez, according to the complaint.

The US Government has 30 days to file a case with a federal grand jury. Meanwhile, the date of Verdejo’s next hearing has not yet been announced.

27-year-old Keishla Rodriguez's body
Authorities examine the body of 27-year-old Keishra Rodriguez in the San Jose Lagoon after being reported missing in San Juan, Puerto Rico on May 1, 2021. (Carlos Giusti / AP photo)

Rodriguez, who was reported missing on Thursday because he didn’t show up at an animal care company, was found in a lagoon near the US territorial capital on Saturday. Authorities identified her Sunday through dental records.

Verdejo and his lawyer previously declined to comment, saying police refused to answer the question because the boxer was not originally cooperating.

Rodriguez’s family said she was pregnant with Verdejo’s child. The victim’s mother, Keila Ortiz, told reporters that her daughter called on Thursday and said Verdejo would go to her house to see the results of her pregnancy test.

“He has already threatened her, so I told her’be careful’,” Ortiz said. She said Verdejo told her daughter not to give birth and mentioned his career and family.

Keishra Rodriguez's mother
Keila Ortiz, the mother of Keishra Rodriguez, the second from the left, after boxer Felix Verdejo was arrested in connection with the death of a 27-year-old pregnant daughter whose body was found in a lagoon outside Sun’s FBI headquarters. Shouts for justice Juan, Puerto Rico, May 2, 2021. (Carlos Giusti / AP photo)

Her parents said Verdejo was married and had a young daughter, but knew Rodriguez from junior high school and maintained a relationship with her.

Verdejo represented Puerto Rico at the 2012 Olympics, becoming a professional boxer that year and competing in the lightweight division. After being hospitalized in a motorcycle accident in 2016, his career was temporarily put off the side road.

This incident has offended many in Puerto Rico. It was recently discovered that another woman was burned at the stake after a judge filed a complaint of domestic violence that she had dismissed. A judge in the higher court has announced an investigation into the decision.

Hundreds of people gathered on a bridge across the lagoon on Sunday, Rodriguez’s body demanded justice because she and another woman were killed, and some threw flowers into the water below. Another protest was organized on Monday, when people gathered near the governor’s mansion and demanded that authorities do a better job of protecting victims of domestic violence.

Danica Koto