‘I thought my life was over’: Missing Arkansas man found safe, friend killed in Mexico

Posted at 4:53 PM, Jun 24, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-24 16:53:41-04

VAN BUREN, Ark. — Jessy Pacheco doesn't remember much about his disappearance or the death of his friend in Mexico, but the Arkansas man is glad to be alive and finally home safe.

Pacheco spoke at a news conference in Van Buren on Sunday after returning from Guadalajara, Mexico, where he had gone missing last week. He had gone there to celebrate his recent graduation from the Universidad Autónoma de Guadalajara.

On June 15, he was with a friend, Carlos Romero, at a nightclub in Guadalajara's Providencia neighborhood. Investigators are still trying to piece together what happened that night, which ended with Pacheco missing and Romero dead.

Authorities found Romero's body near the nightclub where the two had been hanging out. Mexican newspaper Milenio reports that store employees saw a gunman in a red car open fire with an automatic rifle, killing Romero.

Pacheco's disappearance made headlines across the country, with many wondering if Pacheco would return home. His relatives were worried that he might have been kidnapped.

Pacheco's family announced on Friday that he was found safe and would make his way home quickly. During the conference, his family revealed that he had flown back earlier this weekend.

Pacheco's family also said the FBI was involved in the case.

Pacheco said he doesn't know where he was or who he was with, saying he blacked out after he was taken and didn't want to discuss how he was returned home.

"I didn't think I was going to be back home. I thought my life was over," Pacheco said emotionally.

When asked about his friend Carlos , Pacheco said he wished nothing had happened to him.

"I just want to say I would have taken his place," Pacheco said. "He didn't deserve it. I didn't deserve it, either. He was a great guy. Carlos was a close friend of mine. I'm sorry that it happened to him. We prayed a lot for his family."

His family went on to say that they wanted to thank the community and everyone who shared Pacheco's story. They said they believe it is the reason he was returned home.

Pacheco was joined by his mother and his cousin during the press conference.

A GoFundMe account that had been set up for Jessie has raised more than $7,000.