Ciara Estrada was a 25-year-old San Diego police officer who was found dead with a single gunshot wound between her eyes in her small apartment on January 1, 2018. She lived alone, but her boyfriend, who was also a San Diego police officer, had a key to her apartment. The San Diego Police Department (SDPD) quickly ruled her death as a suicide, but her family and friends disputed this conclusion and demanded a thorough investigation. They claimed that Ciara was happy, ambitious, and had no reason to kill herself. They also suspected that her boyfriend, who had a history of anger issues and domestic violence, might have been involved in her death.
Background and Career
Ciara Estrada was born on July 9, 1992, in Scottsbluff, Nebraska. She moved to Goodland, Kansas, with her mother and two sisters after her father died of cancer when she was seven years old. She was a star athlete and student in high school, and received a scholarship to play volleyball at the University of Nebraska. She graduated with a degree in criminal justice in 2014, and joined the SDPD in 2015. She was passionate about her job and loved serving her community. She was assigned to the Mid-City Division, where she worked as a patrol officer and a community relations officer. She was well-liked and respected by her colleagues and superiors, and had received several commendations for her work.
Relationship and Altercation
Ciara Estrada had been dating her boyfriend, who was also a SDPD officer, for over two years. Their relationship was described as serious, but also volatile and abusive. According to Ciara’s family and friends, her boyfriend had a temper and was controlling and jealous. He had physically and verbally assaulted Ciara on several occasions, and had threatened to kill her and himself if she ever left him. Ciara had confided in her mother and sister about the abuse, but had not reported it to the authorities or sought help.
On the night of December 31, 2017, Ciara and her boyfriend attended a New Year’s Eve party at a local hotel with some of their co-workers. According to witnesses, they had a heated argument in front of the other guests, which escalated into a physical altercation. Ciara’s boyfriend allegedly grabbed her by the hair and dragged her out of the party. He also reportedly punched another officer who tried to intervene. Ciara managed to break free and left the hotel in an Uber around 11:30 p.m. She texted her mother and sister that she was okay and that she loved them. She also texted her boyfriend that she was done with him and that he should leave her alone.
Death and Investigation
Ciara Estrada did not show up for her shift on January 1, 2018. Her co-workers became worried and tried to contact her, but got no response. They went to her apartment and found her dead in the bathroom with a gunshot wound to her forehead. Her service weapon was lying next to her body. There was no sign of forced entry or struggle in the apartment. Her boyfriend was not present at the scene, but he claimed that he had spoken to her on the phone around 1:00 a.m. and that she sounded depressed and suicidal.
The SDPD took over the investigation of Ciara’s death, despite the potential conflict of interest. They concluded that Ciara had killed herself, based on the evidence and the autopsy report. They said that there was no indication of foul play or involvement of a third party. They also said that Ciara had left a note on her phone, which read: “I’m sorry, I love you all, but I can’t do this anymore.” They did not release the note to the public or to Ciara’s family.
Controversy and Questions
Ciara Estrada’s family and friends did not accept the SDPD’s verdict of suicide. They said that Ciara was not suicidal, and that the note on her phone was not consistent with her personality or writing style. They also said that Ciara had no history of mental illness or substance abuse, and that she had plans for the future. They questioned the credibility and integrity of the SDPD’s investigation, and accused them of covering up the truth and protecting one of their own. They demanded a second autopsy, a forensic analysis of the phone and the bullet, and a review of the surveillance footage from the hotel and the apartment complex. They also hired a private investigator and a lawyer to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit against Ciara’s boyfriend and the SDPD.
Ciara Estrada’s death cause of death remains a mystery and a controversy. She was a young and promising police officer who died under suspicious circumstances. Her family and friends believe that she was murdered by her abusive boyfriend, who was also a police officer. They claim that the SDPD botched the investigation and covered up the evidence. They are seeking justice and closure for Ciara, who they say was a victim of domestic violence and police corruption.