2 arrested after teen brutally stabbed, left for dead

Lizette Andrea Cuesta

MODESTO, CA (KRON) — Investigators say the woman who was stabbed and left for dead on a rural road near Livermore gave them crucial information before she died that led them to make arrests in her murder.

Lizette Andrea Cuesta

The 19-year-old woman, identified as Lizette Andrea Cuesta, was found early Monday morning crawling along Tesla Road suffering from multiple stab wounds, according to Sgt. Ray Kelly with the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office.

Before she died, Cuesta was able to give authorities a name that led them to arrest a woman and man, both 19, at a Modesto home in the 1000 block of Nadine.

The suspects arrested for the murder of Cuesta are identified as:

  • Daniel Gross, 19, Modesto, California
  • Melissa Leonardo, 25, Modesto, California

“The last thing, that we believe, she was able to do was point us into the direction to the people that killed her,” Kelly said.

Investigators called the scene “gruesome.”

After being stabbed several times, she was dumped out of a car and left for dead, police said.

She had the strength to cling to life, crawling along the road until a passerby spotted her and called the police.

A blood trail shows she pulled herself at least 100 yards before someone drove by and called police to report seeing an injured person.

When first responders arrived, they quickly decided the best option for her survival was to have her emergency airlifted to Eden Hospital in Castro Valley.

She was pronounced dead at the hospital around 4:30 a.m.

Both suspects are in custody at Santa Rita Jail.

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