A tribute to Ariel Garcia in his neighborhood on Saturday, March 30, 2024 in Everett, Washington. (Annie Barker / The Herald)

A tribute to Ariel Garcia in his neighborhood on Saturday, March 30, 2024 in Everett, Washington. (Annie Barker / The Herald)

Newly released 911 call retraces days before Ariel Garcia disappeared

Family reported Janet Garcia, of Everett, had become “very violent and aggressive” in the days prior to the death of her son, age 4.

EVERETT — Audio released Tuesday from the initial 911 call reporting 4-year-old Ariel Garcia’s disappearance shed more light on his family’s concerns in the days leading up his killing.

Janet Garcia, 27, was arrested late last month for investigation of first- and second-degree murder and first-degree assault of her son. The caller, Janet Garcia’s sister-in-law, told the dispatcher the suspect had become “very violent and aggressive” in the days prior to her son’s disappearance.

Everett Herald · Ariel Garcia 911 call

Ariel Garcia’s grandmother had filed for emergency guardianship of the child and his older brother, 7, the day before the youngest son disappeared. But when she and her family went to serve the order, Janet and Ariel Garcia were nowhere to be found.

“We were trying to serve her the papers, but we found nothing — just a bloodstain,” Janet Garcia’s sister-in-law, out of breath, told the 911 dispatcher.

“Do you have an explanation for the blood?” the dispatcher later asked.

“Janet said that the kid fell. But it is a very big bloodstain for that to be true,” the sister-in-law responded.

Ariel Garcia was last known to be alive around 7 a.m. March 27 at an apartment in the 4800 block of Vesper Drive, according to a police report. Janet Garcia and her son had been staying with her ex-boyfriend’s mother for a couple days.

Janet Garcia’s family arrived at the home around 4 p.m., according to 911 call logs. In the audio, the sister-in-law reported Ariel Garcia was not supposed to be with his mother due to the court order, and she was most likely abusing drugs.

For several minutes, the dispatchers struggled to figure out the address because the caller misstated the street name.

The defendant had told people different versions of events, the sister-in-law told the dispatcher. Janet Garcia told her ex’s mother that she was taking her son to the hospital, and going to rehab in Vancouver, Washington.

In another story, the defendant told a family member she was giving her son up for adoption, the sister-in-law reported.

“There’s a lot of things going around that she said and we don’t know,” the sister-in-law told the dispatcher. “And the bloodstain makes us worried. She has a history of being unstable.”

Ariel Garcia, 4, was last seen Wednesday morning in an apartment in the 4800 block of Vesper Dr. (Photo provided by Everett Police)

Ariel Garcia, 4, was last seen Wednesday morning in an apartment in the 4800 block of Vesper Dr. (Photo provided by Everett Police)

The sister-in-law went on to say there were “a lot of police reports” on Janet Garcia that weekend documenting her recent behavior.

Around 5:45 p.m. March 27, 911 dispatchers broadcast a bulletin to police in Snohomish County, advising officers to be on the lookout for the child and his mother.

Thirty minutes later, deputies in Clark County located Janet Garcia, who had what appeared to be bloodstains on her clothes, at a rehab facility in Ridgefield. She reportedly gave deputies inconsistent reports about what happened to her son.

In one instance, she told an investigator Ariel Garcia had fallen off the bed while they were sleeping, according to the police report. She then reported they were not asleep, and claimed she was making tea when he was jumping on the bed and fell.

Just after midnight, deputies booked her in Clark County for investigation of making false statements to police.

At 12:24 a.m. March 28, Everett police issued a missing person alert on social media.

Authorities obtained a search warrant for Janet Garcia’s phone.

Investigators tracked past phone signals and found Ariel Garcia’s body along southbound I-5 in Pierce County, near Joint Base Lewis-McChord, around 5:55 p.m. In a police report, detectives wrote that the boy had at least 16 stab wounds through his torso and at least 41 stab “defects.”

An online fundraiser for Ariel Garcia’s funeral expenses reached over $16,000 Tuesday.

Janet Garcia remained in the Snohomish County Jail this week with bail set at $5 million.

Maya Tizon: 425-339-3434; maya.tizon@heraldnet.com; Twitter: @mayatizon.

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