CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - When Doris Maribel Alvarado-Peraza was arrested last March in Charlotte for DWI and no operator's license, she was booked at the Mecklenburg County. And, as part of normal procedures, her immigration status was checked and came back with a flag.
Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Office contacted Immigration and Customs Enforcement and then placed a detainer on Alvarado-Peraza, but the 27-year-old was still released from custody.
Nine months later, Alvarado-Peraza was back in trouble - this time for allegedly killing someone.
Gaston County Police say Alvarado-Peraza and two other men killed Miguel Romero on December 22nd and dumped his body near Crowders Mountain. Alvarado-Peraza was later arrested in Georgia, where she's awaiting extradition proceedings.
Why was Alvarado-Peraza on the streets if her immigration status was flagged back in March?
According to a spokesperson for Immigration and Customs Enforcement, "U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) encountered Maribel Alvarado-Peraza, 27, a citizen and national of Honduras on March 11, 2017, after she was arrested by the Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Office. That same day, ICE released her on an order of supervision due to humanitarian grounds, with directions to report to the ICE office the following month."
Immigration officials said Alvarado-Peraza "failed to appear at the ICE office as directed, and was subsequently deemed an ICE fugitive."
Meanwhile, her DWI charge was making its way through the court but records show Alvarado-Peraza failed to appear in court in June to face the charges. Court documents show an order for arrest was issued.
Both local and federal authorities were supposed to be for looking Alvarado-Peraza.
When she allegedly committed murder and left the victim's body on the roadside on December 22, she put herself front and center on the radar of Gaston County Police.
Investigators aren't releasing many details about the murder investigation except to say the victim, Miguel Romero, and Alvarado-Peraza were acquaintances.
WBTV has learned the two were roommates at one point.
Family members say when Romero was injured at his job, Alvarado-Peraza convinced him to take legal action... then said she was entitled to some of the money he won. Romero's relatives say Alvarado-Peraza allegedly started abusing him. Romero moved out.
Then right before Christmas - his body was found.
Police haven't said what evidence led them to Alvarado-Peraza, but whatever it is - it helped catch a woman who wasn't supposed to be on the streets.
Federal officials wouldn't say on what humanitarian grounds Alvarado-Peraza was released.
WBTV researched and found out that Honduras - where Alvarado-Peraza is from – had a hurricane 20 years ago. Honduran immigrants were given temporary protected status, which the current administration is in the process of reviewing.