A San Antonio-based soldier and his girlfriend have been arrested in Texas for the murder of the soldier's wife, a private first class, in Maryland last year.
Sgt. 1st Class Maliek Kearney, who is assigned to Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston, was taken into custody by San Antonio police, the San Antonio News Express reported Thursday. Kearney and his girlfriend, Dolores Delgado, were indicted by a Maryland federal grand jury on Tuesday for crossing state lines to commit murder, according to the indictment.
Pfc. Karlyn Ramirez, 24, was found dead of gunshot wounds on Aug. 25, 2015. Kearney and Delgado are charged with traveling from Fort Jackson, South Carolina, Kearney's former duty station, to Ramirez's home near her Fort Meade, Maryland, duty station to commit the murder.
Ramirez's five-month-old daughter was found unharmed next to her body.
"As of right now, he’s still proclaiming his innocence," Alberto Flores, Kearney's attorney, told the San Antonio Express-News on Thursday.
Ramirez's mother told Crime Watch Dailythat the soldier met Kearney while stationed in South Korea and became pregnant in 2014. She started her posting with the 704th Military Intelligence Brigade in December of that year, a spokesman told Army Times last year, while Kearney moved on to Fort Jackson, according to Susan Garcia-Ramirez.
Following the birth of their daughter, Kattelaya Vale Kearney, the two soldiers married in July 2015, Garcia-Ramirez said.
Kearney, a chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear specialist (74D), enlisted in 2000 and has spent time both in the regular Army and Pennsylvania National Guard.
His awards include seven Army Achievement Medals, four Army Commendation Medals and five Good Conduct Medals, as well as the Global War on Terror Expeditionary Medal and the Iraq Campaign Medal with four campaign stars.
Meghann Myers is the Pentagon bureau chief at Military Times. She covers operations, policy, personnel, leadership and other issues affecting service members.