They lived in the rental home for a few weeks before returning to Oxnard, but after worrying the girl's body would be found, they returned to Tijuana on July 25, 2015 -- again with Maria De Jesus Lopez's car -- and exhumed her remains, Barrick said.
They broke apart her bones with pliers and tried to dissolve her remains in a bucket with bleach and water, which they later poured down a sink in the house they were renting, he said.
"They literally poured their daughter down the drain," Barrick said, adding that the couple scattered the girl's bones on various roads before returning to the United States.
In February 2016, Ventura County Children and Family Services received a call requesting a welfare check on Chavez's older daughter. Chavez and Lopez told officials that Kimberly was living with relatives in Mexico. They gave the same explanation to social workers months later but couldn't provide any documentation to back up the claim.
Social workers reported the girl missing to Oxnard police in September 2016. Authorities offered a $10,000 reward for information to help find Kimberly and searched for months before Chavez admitted to police that the girl had died, Barrick said.
Chavez is scheduled to be sentenced next week and faces a maximum of 47 years to life in prison.
(c)2019 Los Angeles Times
Visit the Los Angeles Times at www.latimes.com
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.