On October 29 in a Alameda County court room a jury voted that 28 year old Giselle Esteban was guilty of the first degree murder of her once friend, Michelle Le.
Michelle was a 26 year old nursing student who lived in San Mateo but went missing on May 27, 2011. Le was supposed to return after going to her car but was soon reported missing, with traces of her blood and hair left in her abandoned vehicle. Almost four months later her remains were found in a brush canyon close to Kaiser by a search group compiled by family and volunteers.
Esteban’s attorney did not deny that her client had killed Le, but instead asked for the charge to be lessened to voluntary manslaughter. Included in the unsurmountable evidence of her guilt were cellphone records indicating her proximity to Le during her disappearance, DNA on Esteban’s shoes as well as security camera footage that captured her in the parking lot before and after her disappearance.
The two had once been friends at a San Diego High School and had both moved to the Bay Area to attend college. Tensions began to form after Esteban began dating Scott Marasigan, whom she shares a 6 year old daughter with. Marasigan explained Le and him had a brief romantic relationship prior and but had remained good friends. Esteban was convinced her relationship had failed with Marasigan because of Le.
Esteban had even told a news anchor that she “hated” her old friend, and was allegedly secretly recorded telling Marasigan that they (he and Le) both deserved to die. FBI investigation found evidence on Esteban’s computer that she had searched for ways to kill people without being caught, and had looked for Le’s home address. She had made death threats to Le as early as November of 2010.
Criminal attorneys at the Law Firm of Beresky & Fish P.C. stated that the usual penalty for 1st degree murder is 20 years to life in prison. Giselle Esteban is set to be sentenced on December 3rd where we will all find out how long she will be behind bars.