GREAT BEND — On the windswept courthouse square Friday evening, dozens of people stood across from the Barton County Jail — and watched and waited.
Some were friends of 14-year-old Alicia DeBolt. Some never knew her.
"The whole town is just mad" that she was killed, said 38-year-old Tiffany Serna.
The people were hoping to catch a glimpse of Adam Longoria, the 36-year-old described by Attorney General Steve Six as a person of interest in Alicia's death. An asphalt-plant worker found her burned body Tuesday afternoon, more than two days after she disappeared.
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Longoria was arrested earlier Friday and charged with two crimes not related to Alicia's death. He was released from a Texas prison in May after serving a seven-year sentence for aggravated robbery, officials said.
Among the crowd on the courthouse lawn was Anabell Valdez, visiting from Texas.
"I didn't even know this little girl," Valdez said. But Valdez said she was there because she was outraged that someone had killed a person as young as Alicia and burned her body.
"Nobody deserves that," Valdez said.
Meanwhile, Longoria's girlfriend is heartbroken, her brother said. Jeff Brown said his sister has lived with Longoria for a few months.
Brown said of his sister's situation, "She's torn between both ways — the loss of the DeBolt family and the thought that she was with this man.
"My heart goes out to the DeBolt family,'' Brown continued. "I can't imagine what they're going through, but my thoughts and prayers are with them."
Brown said Longoria told him Wednesday that he had met Alicia once — at a July birthday party for Longoria's girlfriend.
Alicia was last seen Saturday night leaving her house to attend a party.
Brown said his sister's black Ford Escape, which Longoria sometimes drove, has been impounded as part of the investigation. He said the Great Bend house where the couple lived for the past three to four weeks had been searched by authorities Thursday night.
Longoria lived with his girlfriend and her children, ages 10 and 12, Brown said.
He said Longoria told him he worked at Venture Corp., the company that operates the asphalt plant west of Great Bend where an employee found Alicia's burned body.
Longoria was arrested shortly before noon Friday on I-70 west of Salina while driving a 2002 white Ford Explorer, which authorities said was stolen early Friday morning from Venture Corp.
Six's office said late Friday afternoon that Longoria had been charged with one count of vehicle burglary and one count of theft of property worth at least $1,000 but less than $25,000. The charges were filed in Barton County District Court.
Longoria will make his first court appearance Monday at 10 a.m.
The Texas Department of Criminal Justice said Longoria has done time on nine charges there since 1991. Those include burglary, forgery, credit card abuse, escape from prison and evading arrest. He was convicted of aggravated robbery in 2004 and was released May 25.
"As the investigation into the murder of Alicia DeBolt continues, we continue to urge individuals with any information on this case to come forward to law enforcement," Six said in a statement. "Law enforcement continues to use all tools at their disposal to provide justice for Alicia and her friends and family."
A former neighbor of Longoria said he used to live in a house across from Heizer Park. She said he often hung out at the park with young teens, mostly boys. She said the park is a late evening gathering spot for young teens of both sexes.
The former neighbor, who asked not to be identified because of security concerns, said Longoria had some parties at his house where young people attended.
Trent Mermis, owner of Willy J's nightclub on the north side of Great Bend, said investigators earlier this week showed him pictures of Longoria and about three other men and asked whether they had been at his bar the night Alicia disappeared. Mermis said he didn't recall seeing Longoria that night but saw the other men at the club.
Investigators also asked to look through the nightclub's trash, Mermis said.