A suspect has been arrested in the slaying of 15-year-old Alyssa Otremba, whose burned body was found in a northwest valley vacant lot, Las Vegas police said Monday night.
Police confirmed the identity of the victim, who had been missing since Friday.
Javier Righetti, 19, of Las Vegas, was arrested and faces a charge of murder with a deadly weapon in the slaying. Police, who were still interviewing Righetti late Monday, said the suspect also may face additional charges in what was described as a crime of opportunity.
The suspect and the victim did not know each other, police said. The burned body showed signs of blunt force trauma and had been stabbed multiple times.
"This was a 15-year-old girl who was innocent and should not be dead," Metropolitan Police Department Homicide Lt. Lew Roberts said.
The Arbor View High School freshman was last heard from when she messaged her mother to let her know her phone was dying. She stated she was walking on Grand Teton Drive and would be home within 30 minutes, friends and news reports said.
She never showed up.
On Saturday, two people found a burned body in a vacant dirt lot near Grand Teton Drive and Oso Blanca Road. Police arrested Righetti near Durango Drive and El Capitan Way, less than a mile from where the body was found.
Police confirmed that Otremba was walking home when they believe the suspect grabbed her.
"It appears this was clearly a random act," Roberts said.
Friends and neighbors tried to maintain hope that Otremba would be found alive as they kept vigil Monday at a makeshift memorial for the missing girl. The discovery of the body made that difficult.
"It's kind of too easy of a coincidence," said the girl's marching band instructor Francisco Servin as he paid his respects before a collection of flowers and personal messages left at the vacant lot.
He said the school band, in which Otremba played percussion, is "a big family" and the students are all reeling from the news.
The band met for its regular rehearsal Monday afternoon in preparation for an upcoming performance.
Many neighbors who stopped to see the memorial said the area is usually safe and quiet. However, some said the tunnels that run under U.S. Highway 95 -- close to where the body was found -- have become dangerous since people started living in them.
Police did not think Otremba was walking through the tunnels Friday night.
About six months ago, a girl was able to escape an attempted sexual assault while walking in the same area, neighbors said.