"She was dragged and stabbed repeatedly in front of her parent's home," says the victim's sister.
The screams of 24-year-old Irene Torres were heard in court last week, as security footage from the moments before her death was shown in a preliminary hearing for her ex-boyfriend.
Dwayne Herelle Jr., a 28-year-old MMA fighter, was charged with criminal homicide in relation to Torres' murder back in January, after he allegedly stabbed her to death outside of her parents' home in Nashville, Tennessee.
According to a press release from local police, Herelle Jr. met his ex outside the home around 1:30am on January 28, as she returned from work. Police say "he told detectives they argued, and that he stabbed her," before allegedly bringing her body to his own apartment and putting it in a plastic container in his closet.
During the hearing, Metro Nashville Police Department Detective Derry Baltimore described surveillance footage from outside the home, after it was shown to the judge and defense. "They got into an argument and he begins stabbing her and after stabbing her he put her in the trunk of his car," Baltimore said. Her screams can be heard in the court video, via WKRN.
Baltimore said the autopsy found she was "stabbed in excess of 17 times," while detectives said Herelle later disposed of bloody pants and Torres' purse in a dumpster behind a grocery store.
Irene's own parents were the ones who first saw the surveillance footage, checking it in the morning when they woke up and found she wasn't inside the home.
Cops say Herelle initially told police he hadn't seen Torres for a couple days and also told her father she was "at a downtown hotel." When Herelle and her father were en route to the location, however, he "admitted to fatally stabbing the victim," per authorities.
After the confession, which Torres' father apparently caught on video, police searched Herelle's apartment and found the body. "We went to the closet area, and I could see the victim inside of a clear tote, looked like she was wrapped in some type of comforter," Baltimore said during the hearing.
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The victim's older sister, Reyna Douglas, opened up more about the murder in a GoFundMe page set up for Irene's memorial, which was held over the weekend. Per organizers, the additional money will be donated to a local domestic violence charity.
Douglas claimed Herelle "was hiding and waiting for her to get home from work," before he "snuck up from behind and ambushed her" and "dragged and stabbed repeatedly in front of her parent's home."
"When her parents awoke hours later and realized she never came inside the house, they checked their security cameras along with their neighbors' cameras and saw Dwayne forcibly dragging Irene out of the camera's frame," she wrote. "Her mom called 911 and her dad rushed to Dwayne's apartment to bring his daughter home. What he got instead was a confession from Dwayne."
Douglas claimed the relationship was physically and emotionally abusive, saying Torres "returned to her parents' home in the middle of the night terrified and exhausted" after making "the brave decision to escape."
"Irene showed immense bravery in leaving her abusive relationship and was so happy to start her new life with the support of her family, only to be hunted down in her front yard and brutally murdered one month later," she concluded.
If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic abuse or violence, get help. The National Domestic Violence Hotline (1-800-799-7233) provides 24/7, free, confidential support for people in distress.