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Man pleads not guilty to murder of pregnant 22-year-old

A man was charged today with murdering a pregnant woman whose body was found in a wash in the Indio Hills area.

Carlos Javier Navarro-Nieves, 34, pleaded not guilty to double murder charges, with sentencing enhancements of discharge of a firearm causing great bodily and intentional murder.

The body of the victim, 22-year-old Lesly Fernanda Alvarado of Palm Desert, was found around 4:40 a.m. Sunday in a wash near Dillon and Berdoo Canyon roads.

Navarro-Nieves was arrested Sunday night by police in Moreno Valley and booked into the Indio jail just after midnight Monday.

According to the victim’s mother, her daughter was last seen on May 16. Navarro-Nieves is charged with the murder of both Alvarado and her unborn child, identified in court records as “Baby Doe,” Riverside County District Attorney’s Office spokesman John Hall confirmed.

The criminal complaint alleges that the defendant was lying in wait for the victim. Authorities have not said how investigators linked him to the victim, nor whether the two knew each other.

The defendant remains in custody without bail and is next due in court for a felony settlement conference on June 10.

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