Dying teen crawls to get help, uses last words to ID alleged killers

A 19-year-old stabbing victim dragged her bloodied body 90 metres to get help from a passing motorist and used her final words to identify her alleged killers.

A driver who was carpooling to work with three friends found Californian teen Lizette Cuesta soaked in blood and dragging herself along the side of a road, leaving a trail of blood.

Lizette Cuesta dragged herself along the side of a road to get help, then used her final words to identify her alleged killers. Source: Alameda County Sheriff's Office

Richard Loadholt said Ms Cuesta had so much blood in her hair when they found her early on Monday in the city of Livermore, that he could not tell what colour it was.

He told KCRA-TV in Sacramento he gave her a blanket and kept her awake and talking until help arrived.

"I hope it will be encouraging to her family to know that their daughter did have that spirit to fight," Mr Loadholt told the station.

Her fighting spirit helped the 19-year-old use her final words to identify the suspects before she died at a hospital. Source: Alameda County Sheriff's Office

That fighting spirit helped the teen use her final words to identify the suspects before she died at a hospital.

The victim had been out in cold weather for several hours and had dragged herself about 91 metres before she was found, according to the Alameda County sheriff's Office.

Sergeant Ray Kelly said on Tuesday the two people arrested in relation to the stabbing were friends of the victim.

“This victim really tried to survive, and she fought and she fought," Sgt Kelly said.

“The last thing, we believe, that she was able to do was to point us in the direction of the people that killed her. And that’s pretty remarkable.”

Daniel Gross, 19, and his girlfriend Melissa Leonardo, 25, (pictured) allegedly beat and stabbed Lizette Cuesta. Source: Alameda County Sheriff's Office

Ms Cuesta willingly got in the car of Daniel Gross, 19, and his girlfriend, Melissa Leonardo, 25, both of Modesto, before she was beaten and stabbed, police allege.

"That was very compelling information. She explained to us who was responsible for doing this to her," Sgt Kelly said.

"The fact that Lizette was so strong and able to survive was really a testament to her character as a person."

Sgt Kelly said he could not discuss a motive in the killing because the investigation was ongoing.

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