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Family of Miya Marcano files lawsuit against sheriff's office

Photo: the family of Miya Marcano
Photo: the family of Miya Marcano

The family of Miya Marcano – a 19-year-old woman who was kidnapped and murdered in 2021 – is filing a lawsuit against the Orange County Sheriff’s Office for mishandling her case.

The Marcano family alleges OCSO Deputy Samir Paulino failed to implement policies and procedures that deprived Miya Marcano of protection under the 14th Amendment, ultimately leading to her death.

Additionally, the lawsuit points to Paulino's failure to document evidence during a welfare check where he seemingly ignored signs of a struggle in Miya’s room such as blood on a pillow and a propped bookcase against a door. Paulino's supervisor, Corporal Kenneth Dale, was named in the lawsuit for failing to share information.

The lawsuit also names Sheriff John Mina and Orange County Mayor Jerry Demmings for failing to implement policies in adequately training deputies in charge of an investigation.

The lawsuit was filed two years after Miya’s disappearance.

Marcano was kidnapped and killed by a maintenance worker who used a master key to enter into her apartment at Arden Villas in Orlando. Her body was found later in a wooded area near Timber Skan on the Lake in Orlando.

Marcano’s death led to the creation of a state law that requires landlords to run background checks on all employees and must include a scan of sex offender registries and national domestic violence databases.

In a statement, Orange County Sheriff's Office says it doesn’t comment on pending litigation

Corrected: September 26, 2023 at 5:43 PM EDT
An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated Marcano lived at Tymber Skan apartment off South Texas Avenue in Orlando. Her body was found near Tymber Skan, but Marcano lived in the Arden Villas apartment complex in Orlando.
Originally from South Florida, Joe Mario came to Orlando to attend the University of Central Florida where he graduated with degrees in Radio & Television Production, Film, and Psychology. He worked several beats and covered multimedia at The Villages Daily Sun but returned to the City Beautiful as a reporter for the Orlando Sentinel where he covered crime, hurricanes, and viral news. Joe Mario has too many interests and not enough time but tries to focus on his love for strange stories in comic books and horror movies. When he's not writing he loves to run in his spare time.
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