Amber Pasztor has pleaded not guilty in connection with her two young children’s Amber Alert-related murders. The horrific crimes allegedly committed by Amber Pasztor took place just last week on September 26 in Indiana. That’s when the 29-year-old mother of three reportedly abducted her two older children, 7-year-old Liliana and 6-year-old Rene, from their custodial grandparents. An Amber Alert was issued following the abductions, and within hours, it was revealed that the situation had turned tragic.
On the afternoon of September 26, Amber Pasztor reportedly surrendered to an off-duty police officer outside of the Elkhart Police Department. She reportedly approached the officer and told him that she was being sought in connection with an Amber Alert. She led the officer to a parked vehicle, which had also been previously identified as being involved in her children’s abduction. It was there that the officer made the heartbreaking discovery of the bodies of Amber Pasztor’s two young children.
According to investigators, Amber Pasztor was arrested without incident at the Elkhart Police Department. When she was questioned by investigators, she reportedly admitted to smothering both children to death with her bare hands.
On October 3, IndyStar reports that Amber Pasztor appeared in court to face two first-degree murder charges in connection to the Amber Alert murders she allegedly admitted to carrying out last week. Despite having reportedly admitting her role in her children’s abductions and deaths to investigators, Pasztor reportedly pleaded not guilty to the charges levied against her for the Amber Alert murders.
According to Elkhart County Prosecutor Curtis Hill, it is possible that the State of Indiana could seek the death penalty for Amber Pasztor for the murders she allegedly committed at the end of September. However, that decision has not yet been made. Even if prosecutors opt out of pursuing capital punishment in the case of the Amber Alert murders, Pasztor is still looking at decades in prison if she is convicted. Each murder count carries the possibility of 45 to 65 years in prison, or the prosecutors could also seek life without the possibility of parole.
In addition to facing two first-degree murder charges in connection with the senseless murders of her two young children, Amber Pasztor could also be facing a slew of additional charges connected to the Amber Alert-related abduction of the kids, as well as the actions she is believed to have taken in the hours and days leading up to the crimes.
Investigators believe that Amber Pasztor might have also shot and killed her elderly neighbor, 65-year-old Frank Macomber, before she allegedly abducted and killed her two young children. According to law enforcement, Pasztor was driving Macomber’s car at the time of the Amber Alert. When the alert was initially issued, investigators thought that Pasztor might have been working with Macomber to abduct her children; when his body was later discovered, that was determined not to be the case.
If Pasztor does face charges for the murder of Frank Macomber, it is possible that they will be filed out of Allen County, which is where both Amber Pasztor and Macomber lived, as well as where his body was later found in a wooded area near the pair’s homes.
Law enforcement officials have stated that leading up to the Amber Alert murder, Amber Pasztor forcibly broke into her fathers’ home by kicking in his door, and then, she reportedly took her children. Her father and the children’s legal guardian, Ricky Green, has spoken out publicly about his abducted and slain grandchildren. According to Green, he considered Amber Pasztor’s children to be his own and had been raising them for more than a year at the time of the Amber Alert. According to WANE, the two children had another 3-year-old sibling, and he had taken legal custody because of the “terrible situation” they’d been living in.
A terrible situation was reportedly connected to Amber Pasztor’s history of drug abuse and instability.
“Just really tore up because we took in her kids because she had problems. We took them in and I’ve grown to love them very much. They’re great kids. They both have a promising future with us. I guess their mom didn’t like that.”
So far, investigators haven’t released a motive behind the Amber Alert murders or even the abduction. Prosecutors have confirmed that Amber Pasztor will be undergoing a mental health evaluation to determine her competency to stand trial in connection to her kids’ alleged murders.
In addition to reportedly admitting to smothering her children to death and being a suspect in the shooting death of her neighbor Frank Macomber, Amber Pasztor may also be connected to another murder. That victim was Rene Hernandez, the father of her two murdered children. Hernandez disappeared in December of 2009. Over six months later, his body (like the body of Frank Macomber) was found in a wooded area. He had been dismembered.
At the time of his disappearance, Amber Pasztor was questioned, but she was never considered a person of interest. She was reportedly pregnant with her son Rene, one of the Amber Alert murder victims, at the time. Now, in the wake of her children’s murders and the murder of her neighbor, her connection to the 2009 crime is being re-evaluated.
“The detective wasn’t leaning toward her or anything. If she wasn’t a person of interest then, she sure is now.”
Amber Pasztor is currently being held without bail in the Elkhart County Jail pending her Amber Alert murder trial, which has been scheduled for January 23, 2017. She has reportedly been appointed a public defender in the case.
[Featured Image by Elkhart County Sheriff’s Department]