Nicole Montalvo’s husband and father-in-law have been arrested for her murder, but the investigation continued as the community mourned her death Monday night.
“We will not rest with this investigation until every shred of evidence is located, and every shred of evidence is processed to establish a strong case to hand over to our state attorney‘s office. We want to see these people prosecuted to the highest level the law will allow,” said Osceola County Sheriff Russ Gibson.
Investigators on Friday found human remains at a rural St. Cloud property owned by her in-laws. They were identified as Montalvo’s Sunday.
Montalvo’s estranged husband, Christopher Otero-Rivera, had been living with his parents at the property on Hixon Avenue in rural St. Cloud.
Montalvo, 33, had dropped the couple’s son Elijah at the home on Monday, Oct. 21, and was reported missing two days later after not picking him up from school.
Otero-Rivera, 31, and his father, Angel Luis Rivera, 63, were arrested Friday on charges unrelated to Montalvo’s death, but were considered persons of interest in the case, according to the Sheriff’s Office.
By Sunday, the father and son were charged with premeditated murder. Both are in custody at the Osceola County Jail and are being held on no bond.
Otero-Rivera also was charged with violating a domestic injunction and violating probation. His father faces an additional charge of possession of a weapon by a convicted felon, according to jail records.
Gibson said Sunday that a search warrant was executed at a second home owned by the Rivera family on Henry J Avenue and turned up more human remains.
Montalvo, who worked at Broadway Pizza Bar in downtown Kissimmee, was remembered by hundreds who gathered for a vigil Sunday night on the beach at St. Cloud’s Lakefront Park.
Her family spoke briefly at the candlelight ceremony. Many in the crowd wore purple to symbolize the movement to end domestic violence.
“This is something that affects a lot of people out there and we ask that you take some action,” said her brother Steven Montalvo.
“Use this as a starting board to push the message in the fight against domestic violence...because we know that there’s people out there suffering from this,” he said.
Eddie Montalvo, her twin brother, and Edward Montalvo, her father, said she would have been amazed by the outpouring of support for her and her family.
“We know that this is just the beginning and we want to honor Nicole. And we want to do right by raising Elijah to be the best young man he can be,” Steven Montalvo said.
Donations and condolences began pouring into the “Nicole Montalvo Memorial Fund” on GoFundMe.com as soon as it was created Tuesday. According to the site, the money raised will benefit Montalvo’s son.