Watch CBS News

Police: Man Arrested In N.J. After Stabbing Woman, Taking 3-Year-Old Daughter

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- A man was arrested in Clifton, New Jersey late Tuesday afternoon after police said he stabbed a woman, and fled with their 3-year-old daughter in the Bronx.

Diomedes Valenzuela, 51, was in custody as of 5:15 p.m., according to New Jersey State Police. His daughter, Rebecca Valenzuela, was safe with New Jersey state troopers, police said.

Troopers stopped the vehicle on the Garden State Parkway in Clifton, police said.

An AMBER Alert had been issued after Rebecca was taken by her father in a 2004 gray Dodge Caravan, police said.

As CBS2's Sonia Rincon reported, New Jersey State Police Lt. Al Miller said detectives from Troop D hit the road, and spotted the vehicle.

According to police, state troopers went out and actively looked for the vehicle after the AMBER alert was issued. Police found the car and followed it in an unmarked vehicle until an official police car could pull Valenzuela over.

Valenzuela surrendered without incident, according to police, 1010 WINS reported.

"It was a high-risk stop," Miller said. "And just thank God that he went willingly. He didn't put up a fight."

Little Rebecca, police said, was unharmed and checked out in good condition.

"I got her McDonalds. She's sitting in my office, Miller said, "and she's fine. She's watching cartoons."

Rebecca's 31-year-old mother was found stabbed multiple times at 2974 Perry Ave., near Bedford Park Boulevard, in the Norwood section of the Bronx around 1:45 p.m., police sources told CBS2. Police said they believe Valenzuela stabbed the woman in a domestic quarrel.

As CBS2's Ilana Gold reported, police said they found the woman in her second-floor apartment with stab wounds to her body and neck, and Valenzuela nowhere in sight.

"I was just pretty shocked when I saw that," said neighbor Rafael Martinez.

Martinez said he watched the victim get taken out of the building by paramedics and rushed to St. Barnabas Hospital. She was in critical condition at the hospital late Tuesday afternoon, police said.

"She was like, she looked numb to me," Martinez said.

Neighbors in the Bronx could not imagine what Set Valenzuela off.

"It's shocking," said neighbor Ray Morales. "I never would have seen him that type of way."

In fact, as far as Morales knew, Valenzuela was once in law enforcement himself.

"He said he was a police officer once before, and I know he worked for the MTA," Morales said.

Investigators late Tuesday said they did not know the motive behind the stabbing and the abduction. Charges are still pending.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.