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Boxer Felix Verdejo ‘person of interest’ after missing woman’s remains are found

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The deceased woman, who was reportedly Verdejo’s girlfriend, was found in a body of water in Puerto Rico yesterday.

Felix Verdejo - Shakur Stevenson v Toka Khan-Clary - Fight Night
Felix Verdejo when he fought Masayoshi Nakatni in December, 2020.
Photo by Mikey Williams/Top Rank Inc via Getty Images

According to reports out of Puerto Rico top lightweight boxer Felix Verdejo, 27, is a person of interest with regards to the death of a young woman who was last seen alive at his home in San Juan.

Boxing Scene reports that Verdejo was questioned by police on Friday regarding the disappearance of Keishla Marlen Rodriguez Ortiz, 27. Verdejo reportedly refused to answer questions regarding Rodriguez or their relationship.

Authorities in Puerto Rico issued a Pink Alert for Rodriguez after she was reported missing on Wednesday. That alert is the product of a recently passed bill in Puerto Rico that allows authorities to expedite missing person cases that relate to women whose disappearances are linked to domestic violence, hate crimes or crimes of a sexual nature.

That bill was created due to Puerto Rico’s alarming record of femicides and crimes against women. The U.S. territory declared a state of emergency over femicides in January.

Investigators in San Juan have said that Rodriguez’s last known location was Verdejo’s home, where she presented him with a positive pregnancy test. El Neuvo Dia also reports that police have cell phone records that show multiple calls from Rodriguez to Verdejo on the morning she disappeared. That outlet also reported that Verdejo’s wife has confirmed that Verdejo and Rodriguez were involved in an extramarital relationship.

Big Fight Weekend reports that a woman’s body, believed to be that of Rodriguez, was retrieved from a lagoon near the town of Carolina yesterday.

Lance Pugmire reports that police believe that, due to blood evidence, the woman was thrown from a bridge into the lagoon. Pugmire also said that police have identified a truck that could have been used to transport the woman to the bridge. Pugmire later reported that TV news in Puerto Rico showed police officers investigating a truck at Verdejo’s home.

Verdejo’s promoter Top Rank Boxing has since released a statement regarding this incident.

Top Rank’s thoughts and prayers are with Keishla Marlen Rodriguez Ortiz’s family and friends, and with all those in mourning.

We are deeply disturbed by the news reports, and we will continue to monitor developments in the case as it progresses.

Verdejo represented Puerto Rico at the 2012 Olympics. As a pro he has amassed as 27-2 record, which included his winning and defending of the WBO Latino lightweight title. His last fight, in December 2020, was for the vacant WBO Inter-Continental lightweight title. He lost that bout, to Masayoshi Nakatani, by TKO.