A 26-year-old was charged with capital murder and other charges related to Pico Rivera carjacking on Wednesday, in which 13-year-old Isabella Cortes was killed on Sunday.
The Los Angeles district attorney's office announced on Wednesday that Jose Elias Aguilar from Los Angeles was each subject to a murder and assault count of a child, and four counts of carjacking and kidnapping each while committing a carjacking.
Prosecutors announced that the case included allegations of murder while committing carjacking and kidnapping following the suspect's previous conviction for first-degree burglary in 2017.
On Sunday afternoon, Aguilar is said to have jumped into a minivan where four siblings, ages 8, 10, 13 and 17, were waiting while their parents picked up food at a restaurant in Pico Rivera. Two of the children were reportedly able to jump out of the vehicle before the man started driving.
The 8-year-old boy and 13-year-old Isabella were then thrown out of the vehicle because of the allegedly unpredictable driving of the defendant. In addition to Isabella's death, which occurred when she fell on an object while falling out of the vehicle, prosecutors said the incident seriously injured the boy.
Aguilar is said to have crashed the van and stole a second vehicle in which the driver fought it until the car in which a woman and a 2-year-old were found crashed. The accused was allegedly arrested by merciful Samaritans who held him until the police arrived.
The accused is held without bail. If Aguilar is convicted as a defendant, he faces a possible maximum sentence for death or life in prison without the possibility of parole. The prosecutor will decide at a later date whether to apply for the death penalty.
The case is still under investigation by the Los Angeles County Sheriff Department.