A shocking incident occurred in Illinois when a man named Reese Miller allegedly stole a vehicle and left an apology note, expressing his remorse for hurting anyone. This incident took a tragic turn as Miller had reportedly zip-tied the victim’s throat, causing her to lose her life. The victim, Ma L. Operio, 61, was found with the zip-tie around her neck, making it difficult for her to breathe. Although she was rushed to the hospital, she succumbed to her injuries four days later.
The Harwood Heights Police Department managed to apprehend Miller when they found him driving Operio’s blue Toyota Scion three hours after the incident. Inside the stolen vehicle, the police discovered a knife and the apology note. In the note, Miller expressed deep remorse for hurting anyone, stating that it seemed to be his only choice at the moment. He further added that he never thought such actions were possible until he faced the harsh reality.
Miller admitted to the crime and has been charged with attempted first-degree murder and aggravated vehicular hijacking. The police found Operio outside her home, unresponsive, with the zip-tie still wrapped around her neck. They immediately removed it, performed CPR, and rushed her to the hospital. Despite their efforts and the use of life support, Operio’s family made the heartbreaking decision to take her off life support, leading to her passing on September 3.
Operio’s mother, Maria Gimeno, revealed that her daughter was already dead when she was found on the pavement. Although she was revived at the hospital, she was declared brain-dead. A neighbor who witnessed the incident informed the police that they saw a man appearing to choke Operio and later move her body after securing the zip-tie. The neighbor’s account helped the police in their investigation.
The authorities located Miller in Crete, Illinois, inside the stolen vehicle through doorbell camera footage. The footage showed someone matching Miller’s appearance wearing the same clothing he was arrested in. Miller confessed to being the person in the video and admitted that the recovered knife belonged to him. He also explained that he had moved Operio’s body to prevent running her over with the car.
Miller was read his Miranda Rights, and he provided a statement confessing to the crimes. Currently, he is being held without bail in the Cook County Jail, and his court date has been set for September 22. Miller’s public defender informed PEOPLE Magazine that he suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder, shedding some light on his possible motivations or mental state during the incident.