MEXICO CITY (AP) — A Texas woman whose 8-year search for her missing daughter in Mexico led her to be handed the wrong girl now believes she has found the right one. But, this time, she'll have to wait for DNA results to prove the match.
Dorotea Garcia said early Wednesday she has been able to hug her daughter, Alondra Diaz Garcia, for the first time since 2007, when the girl's father took her into Mexico without Garcia's consent.
The two were reunited late Tuesday in a courtroom in the western state of Michoacan.
"We couldn't resist the urge to run into each other's arms," Garcia told journalists outside the court. "We are like little birds, my daughter won't let go of me and never tires of giving me kisses."
Garcia's search gained international attention last month after Judge Cinthia Elodia Mercado ruled that another teenager named Alondra, 14-year-old Alondra Luna, was the missing girl and ordered her to be released to Garcia. Video recordings circulated widely of Alondra Luna desperately resisting police after the decision, prompting protests for her return to her family.
A DNA test conducted in Houston, Texas, revealed she wasn't Garcia's daughter and Luna was sent home to Mexico.
While Alondra Diaz Garcia and her relatives acknowledge that she is Garcia's true daughter, Mercado said late Tuesday that she would wait for DNA test results, which she expects Friday.
"They (the relatives and the mother) did not want DNA testing carried out, but the prosecutor asked for it, to be certain," Mercado said.
Mercado denied there was any contradiction in the way the two girls were handled. While Alondra Luna's parents have said they begged Mercado not to take their daughter and demanded DNA testing, the judge said there had been no formal request.
"The last time, it is important to point out that there was no request for DNA tests," Mercado said. "There has been no error made here."
While the court awaits the DNA test results, Alondra Diaz Garcia will stay with relatives and a child-protection official at a hotel in Los Reyes, Michoacan.
Garcia called the reunion with her daughter "a temporary triumph."
"But I am sure — my heart tells me, God tells me — that I will leave hand-in-hand with my child."
Garcia's lawyer, Pedro de la Rosa, said the mother would be willing to withdraw legal complaints against Alondra's father, Reynaldo Diaz, if she regains custody.
Alicia Diaz, the girl's aunt who accompanied her to the court, said she was sure Alondra would be happy to be with Garcia, adding, "We will miss her."