Found Deceased CA - Maricela Garcia, 26, Reseda, 12 Jan 2017 #3

cnmccarthy

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Seems to have been laid to rest. I have a special place in my heart for these kind of waifs and even if there's no way of saving them they still deserve due diligence and record keeping. Where is the medical examiner's report? Where is the church's security footage? This wasn't the 90s this was five years ago. There needs to be some concrete evidence to at least suggest a certain course of events beyond "she had this thing in her history so that's probably what happened to her" but no, she just walks out of a busy store in the middle of the day and is gone just like that.

It is heartwarming to see what effort @mistivon put into this one. I am glad she's still a part of the community and presumably weathered the health struggle I see mentioned some years upthread.

VERY good questions and ones I’ve been asking myself since her death was reported.
 

evilwise

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VERY good questions and ones I’ve been asking myself since her death was reported.
Also - and I admit I haven't read this whole thread - but the information from her phone seems incomplete. Why do we know where she walked to before her phone shut down with such great accuracy (multiple discrete locations on the same block) but not who she was in contact with in the hours or days leading up? Seems like those people would be considered of interest in a typical investigation?

We unfortunately ran out of things to discuss as nothing was reported on the case past her death. It is a case that has always bothered me and I still don’t believe she OD’d. Ditching her sister in the middle of a shopping trip, going through a church and asking for help, the dogs trail they followed. It’s all so eerie.
Out of the four or five broad categories of things that happen to people, overdose (covering both accidental and suicidal) seems more likely than any other to me but again there is simply not enough concrete evidence to feel like any explanation is acceptable. She was a human being and a cute young woman even. Her case deserves more scrutiny.
 
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beubeubeu

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Out of the four or five broad categories of things that happen to people, overdose (covering both accidental and suicidal) seems more likely than any other to me but again there is simply not enough concrete evidence to feel like any explanation is acceptable. She was a human being and a cute young woman even. Her case deserves more scrutiny.
And what about forced overdose? As long as someone has history of drug use, or even just a history of being accused of drug use, forcibly feeding or injecting them with a thing much stronger that they can handle comes with the lowest risk of dealing with any consequences of the murder.
 

cnmccarthy

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And what about forced overdose? As long as someone has history of drug use, or even just a history of being accused of drug use, forcibly feeding or injecting them with a thing much stronger that they can handle comes with the lowest risk of dealing with any consequences of the murder.

Exactly. She was genuinely afraid for her life. I just don’t see that turning into her OD’ing and suddenly by the side of the road. Someone had a hand in this. IMO
 

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Many of us followed sooo closely to this case as it unfolded. I was so invested. I think about Maricela often & truly hope that she is resting peacefully. I don’t know if we will ever truly know what happened to her but I am thankful that she at least was found. The entire situation was so bizarre & I think there is a lot more that is unknown & probably a lot more nefarious things went on, but there really was nothing else to discuss.
 

beubeubeu

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Exactly. She was genuinely afraid for her life. I just don’t see that turning into her OD’ing and suddenly by the side of the road. Someone had a hand in this. IMO
I don't think I ever posted anything in her threads, but I've learned about this case while Maricela went missing, kept checking for updates and felt so shocked when they came up with conclusion what happened so fast.
I don't know that many people who were using drugs, but I knew a few, and it sounded like the exact opposite of what they'd do.

Doing crazy things while being under influence - yeah, they were able to "figure" that something scary is near them, even if it wasn't and try to run away into the woods or whatever. These things could end up bad if nobody would caught them before they wandered away.
That long lasting fear and panic, side effect of taking too much bad stuff - yeah, but all three who had to deal with that were always terrified with the prospect of being left alone. Always tried to be WITH people, not to run away from them cause being alone was too scary.
Taking drugs then, they used to preach to NEVER do that, cause it won't calm anything, just make things worse - even those who were not at all against continuing drug use kept reminding each other and warning pretty much anyone who'd listen to never take drugs while having a bad trip after taking a break from habit or trying to stop it.

And yet, the story was, that a girl who went through a lot of struggle while trying to leave drugs behind was either:
a) not at all ashamed of falling into it again, and took something just to go along with shopping trip instead of using whatever excuse to focus on being high and not risking that her sister will notice - and then she got a bad reaction and ran away wherever, which resulted in her death,
b) having some drugs on her and decided to take it while her sister wasn't looking, while going shopping with her - and then she got bad reaction and ran away... but her sister somehow haven't noticed that she's under influence already, despite of her taking enough to OD?
c) figured that's good time to look for some drugs in the middle of that shopping trip, acting all scared and irracional, but hey, all of that before she actually found someone to buy drugs from, then took them and had bad reaction... and ran away towards wherever why?

And she was not that tall, rather slim woman, so if she indeed OD'd, she'd fell pretty close to where she took it. It takes minutes at best and people are unable to run anywhere or take casual walks while it's happening, neither they are the moments before. Neither they're getting magical skill of teleportation.

It looks like a perfect spot to OD
1655423866071.png
Especially considering that it's 23 miles away from the place where she was last seen, in the evening, in January, leaving her car behind, her purse in it, conveniently remembering to turn her phone off before getting high or commiting suicide on the side of this nicely looking highway, middle of the night.

1655423769010.png
Many of us followed sooo closely to this case as it unfolded. I was so invested. I think about Maricela often & truly hope that she is resting peacefully. I don’t know if we will ever truly know what happened to her but I am thankful that she at least was found. The entire situation was so bizarre & I think there is a lot more that is unknown & probably a lot more nefarious things went on, but there really was nothing else to discuss.
I understand that. I wasn't thinking that much about people who were discussing it back then and stayed invested.
I just wanted to check if there was any update recently and felt saddened that nobody "new" came in three years. Understandable that same people aren't discussing same things over and over.

SS of the map I shared just cause I wanted to see that distance once again.
I guess I just wanted to note that I'm out there too, remembering her.
 

cnmccarthy

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I don't think I ever posted anything in her threads, but I've learned about this case while Maricela went missing, kept checking for updates and felt so shocked when they came up with conclusion what happened so fast.
I don't know that many people who were using drugs, but I knew a few, and it sounded like the exact opposite of what they'd do.

Doing crazy things while being under influence - yeah, they were able to "figure" that something scary is near them, even if it wasn't and try to run away into the woods or whatever. These things could end up bad if nobody would caught them before they wandered away.
That long lasting fear and panic, side effect of taking too much bad stuff - yeah, but all three who had to deal with that were always terrified with the prospect of being left alone. Always tried to be WITH people, not to run away from them cause being alone was too scary.
Taking drugs then, they used to preach to NEVER do that, cause it won't calm anything, just make things worse - even those who were not at all against continuing drug use kept reminding each other and warning pretty much anyone who'd listen to never take drugs while having a bad trip after taking a break from habit or trying to stop it.

And yet, the story was, that a girl who went through a lot of struggle while trying to leave drugs behind was either:
a) not at all ashamed of falling into it again, and took something just to go along with shopping trip instead of using whatever excuse to focus on being high and not risking that her sister will notice - and then she got a bad reaction and ran away wherever, which resulted in her death,
b) having some drugs on her and decided to take it while her sister wasn't looking, while going shopping with her - and then she got bad reaction and ran away... but her sister somehow haven't noticed that she's under influence already, despite of her taking enough to OD?
c) figured that's good time to look for some drugs in the middle of that shopping trip, acting all scared and irracional, but hey, all of that before she actually found someone to buy drugs from, then took them and had bad reaction... and ran away towards wherever why?

And she was not that tall, rather slim woman, so if she indeed OD'd, she'd fell pretty close to where she took it. It takes minutes at best and people are unable to run anywhere or take casual walks while it's happening, neither they are the moments before. Neither they're getting magical skill of teleportation.

It looks like a perfect spot to OD
View attachment 349762
Especially considering that it's 23 miles away from the place where she was last seen, in the evening, in January, leaving her car behind, her purse in it, conveniently remembering to turn her phone off before getting high or commiting suicide on the side of this nicely looking highway, middle of the night.

View attachment 349761

I understand that. I wasn't thinking that much about people who were discussing it back then and stayed invested.
I just wanted to check if there was any update recently and felt saddened that nobody "new" came in three years. Understandable that same people aren't discussing same things over and over.

SS of the map I shared just cause I wanted to see that distance once again.
I guess I just wanted to note that I'm out there too, remembering her.

Such a well put and thought out post. reading through it and seeing the map of where she was found compared to the shopping trip just astounds me how the police could ever think that anyone would buy the “OD” story. But sadly it looks as if that’s exactly what happened (the press and general public believing that), seeing as there have been no updates, no press releases, etc. idt the autopsy results were even released.
 

beubeubeu

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Such a well put and thought out post. reading through it and seeing the map of where she was found compared to the shopping trip just astounds me how the police could ever think that anyone would buy the “OD” story. But sadly it looks as if that’s exactly what happened (the press and general public believing that), seeing as there have been no updates, no press releases, etc. idt the autopsy results were even released.
Well, narrative is everything. And in here, narrative was "oh, it's so sad but she probably relapsed, drug addiction is indeed tragic".
Not in this exact words, but that was what I get from it and I doubt that many of those who didn't knew her or didn't dig for details could get anything else from this.

With obvious reasons I can't link stuff that I've read back then, but I remember the shock I felt when I went to google maps and out of habit tried to see how it looks like (meaning godwill store and the ~location where she was found).

It sounded... sort of possible, cause from these few articles I've read it sounded like she was found in some bushes, in reasonably "walkable" distance. Story sounded reasonable: she had previous issues with drugs, with possible relapse at the time, acted weird while shopping with her sister, excused herself to have a smoke, likely going to meet someone who she could get drugs from, took them, had a bad reaction and wandered away, possibly fell in some secluded, bushy area and wasn't found quickly cause it was hard to get there and bit too far from the original spot.
That could happen.

The fact that she was done with drugs for two years at that point and living with that same sister, trying to get her life back together, that there were no signs of her using drugs again, that she never acted like this before and where she was actually found, how freaking FAR from the thrift store, all of that just missed the headlines.
No reason for people to not buy the OD story. Possible relapse was repeated all over her coverage while she went missing. And okay, it's totally likely for people who previously used drugs to come back to the habit. Also likely for them to OD, cause their tolerance to drugs is much lower than it used to be. In same time probability of previous drug use to be used against someone, to discredit them and everything they do or what happens to them is also pretty high. Same with risk of angering some shady people from the past by trying to cut all ties with them - much easier to get into bad terms with them while getting (or trying to get) away from that crowd, than while staying.
Like with abusive relationships, they are dangerous, for women it's scarily often a mortal danger to stay in them, but statistic is pretty clear on this, huge majority of murdered women (and men also) ended up murdered not as they were in them, but when they decided to break up, run away, end this toxic hell that they were in.

What scares me the most is that she probably run away from that store to save her sister from what she saw as unavoidable interaction with bad people.

Btw. Is it even possible to tell with certaintity (or at least high likelyness) that cause of death was OD while dealing with just scattered bones?
 

evilwise

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The plausible scenario is that the secret she had was that she had relapsed and she knew that it could be trouble. She met up with someone in the parking lot to party with then overdosed and was dumped. We see this scenario play out again and again but typically this person is more or less easily identified found and often gets charged with abuse of a corpse etc etc. Where are Mericela's phone records? Had she been given a burner phone? That's a dangerous thing to accept but investigators can usually connect two phones with tower dumps and some effort. I'm sure that tower dumps from Southern California are huge but I would think detectives could at least make some kind of concrete statement about the phone records, "Mericela's phone records and social media were searched without any suspicious recent communication" can they at least make that statement to the press?
 

beubeubeu

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So here it says:
"The skeletal remains were discovered on March 7, by a man walking his dog on Golden Valley Road, west of the Robert. C. Parkway, according to the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department."
Remains Identified as Missing California Woman Who Disappeared While Shopping
But here it is:
"The remains of 26-year-old Maricela Garcia were found behind Golden Valley High School in Santa Clarita in March of 2017."
Sorry I've made a mistake and ended up bit too far on this highway it will be somewhere around here:
Google Maps

Still, well over 18 miles and looks pretty much the same.
The plausible scenario is that the secret she had was that she had relapsed and she knew that it could be trouble. She met up with someone in the parking lot to party with then overdosed and was dumped. We see this scenario play out again and again...
Let's agree to disagree about plausibility of that.

I can only rely on my own experience and those I had with people I've met - so it's neither a proof or an argument in any stretch of imagination, but no secret I ever told anyone about having or was told by anyone of them having was or revealed itself to be possible to describe as "that thing which everyone is terrified of me doing again - well guess what, I'm doing it!". Of course I have no idea how it was said and in what context, what they were discussing right before Maricela told that, but I wouldn't bet anything on it being her relapse.
May be something connected to the relapse: something what she saw, learned, did while relapsing, but not the relapse itself - or something not related to the relapse in any way, no matter if she had it or not.
IMO relapse is for sure a good secret to have but highely, highely unlikely a secret to notify anyone about, especially not her, concerned about her life and health sister who was living with her.
The only reason I see for telling someone close about the secret's existence is having to deal with it's overwhelming weight and sharing something without sharing everything; seeking for some sort of relief, not causing the listener to go on high alert and figuring out that the secret is the most obvious and hardest feared thing that could come to mind.

I'd expect such secret to be something like:
- being seriously ill or worrying about being seriously ill,
- working on making a big but risky change in life,
- being pregnant,
- struggling with some knowledge, that a person would wish to not have: like knowing that someone is cheating, knowing about somebody's illegal activity, being whitness of a crime,
- feeling like having no other choice than to work in illegal ways,
- having love interest that with some reasons can be oficially introduced to friends and family.
Especially that her exact words were that she's guarding a secret. Guarding her own secret? That'd be very unusual way to phrase it.

I don't see her partying as plausible scenario unless she had something like borderline disorder and could switch into totally different mood in the matter of seconds.

She was noticeably nervous, went outside to have a smoke.
It was dark and raining, so for me nothing odd with her leaving her purse in the car, even if she got there to took a few cigs out. I'd do the same to not have a purse wet.
Then she went to the church and prayed for a bit till she suddenly run out, looking scared/worried.
She hurried towards the place that looks like this, and may be the only spot there that is surely NOT covered by the surveillance cameras, but car can park just next to it. Should be visible if any car was there I think.
1655775054658.png
She doesn't make a significantly long stop there, goes back to the shopping center, but checked it out from the "back", where the other entry to the groccery store is, and some other business, animal hospital and from where the other entrance of the goodwill store is clearly visible. All that path, starting from the front goodwill entrance near where her car was, to the church and behind, where possibly her cigarette buds were found... surveillance cameras are everywhere as I see on the google maps, and they're not new models, so they likely were there in 2017 as well. Her actions should be easily traceable by groccery store's cameras.

Looks like from these bushes she was heading back to the goodwill store. Then something made her turn back.
Makes complete sense for me so far. She had someone calling her at the store, it worried her and she tried to turn it off, failed so she turned off whole phone. Stepped out with smoking excuse, went to the church to pray. Then she had to either turn her phone back on or get conntact on the other phone, and someone told her to meet them at the bushy corner of the parking lot. Apparently nobody was there, so no stop but lighting a cigarette. Starting somewhere around that bush she should be able to smoke about half of it till she walked up to the point where she suddenly turned back.
Why she turned back? IMO not because she saw someone, but cause she got conntacted again and notified that she's expected to be at the other parking lot's rear end with bushes. Scared, distressed, she could smash her other phone on the spot to cut all the ties. Trash cans are there. Removing battery was likely the only way to get out the sim card. Both probably ended up in different trash cans along the way.

Then she heads out of the parking lot to the Lindley Avenue towards...

Edit: oh no, I lost half of my post cause website bugged and left me with what I had yesterday.
 

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evilwise

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Being visibly nervous and starting to get desperate for a fix can look a lot alike. I'm still sort of racking my brain for why there is such highly detailed tracking for where she went with her phone after walking out of the Goodwill but apparently not detailed records of her contacts and the best guess I can come up with is that her family had tracking software installed on it which would suggest to me that they were concerned about the possibility of her taking off. Marcela being aware of the tracking software might explain why she would have disabled her phone as she was being picked up.
 

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cvaldez1975

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was this shared back then? from link: " However, we have now confirmed she was an outpatient at the methadone treatment center on the same block and she attended the church also on the block. A tracking dog indicated Maricela went inside the church and sat in a pew after leaving the Goodwill store. Two churchgoers said they saw her inside the church that night praying and then leaving in a panic."
 

beubeubeu

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Being visibly nervous and starting to get desperate for a fix can look a lot alike. I'm still sort of racking my brain for why there is such highly detailed tracking for where she went with her phone after walking out of the Goodwill but apparently not detailed records of her contacts and the best guess I can come up with is that her family had tracking software installed on it which would suggest to me that they were concerned about the possibility of her taking off. Marcela being aware of the tracking software might explain why she would have disabled her phone as she was being picked up.
These are not her phone tracks. This is a path of her movement traced by qualified dogs - and that to some degree is confirmed by at least two women at the church who remembered her being there and storming out.
Following these dogs family and friends were able to locate her:
- smashed phone in the trash at the back of that shopping center where goodwill store was located,
- half smoked cigarette of her, not so commonly smoked brand,
- ripped choker/necklace near the trash cans at the Kaiser's parking lot, where dogs lost her track.
At least 80 to 90% of her movement there should be caught on multiple surveillance cameras, as they're all over that shopping centre and at the traffic lights, and some seem to be aimed at the spot where she stopped for a bit next to the door of the Kaiser's.
No tracking software ever mentioned, but neither was her logs, phone records or any other surveillance that would caught her - but also no official statement that would state that none of those 20+ cameras worked at the time, or that all of that was searched but she wasn't visible anywhere (and she should be pretty easy to spot considering what she was wearing).
 

beubeubeu

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was this shared back then? from link: " However, we have now confirmed she was an outpatient at the methadone treatment center on the same block and she attended the church also on the block. A tracking dog indicated Maricela went inside the church and sat in a pew after leaving the Goodwill store. Two churchgoers said they saw her inside the church that night praying and then leaving in a panic."
Most of that was, not sure if the fact that she was a patient at Kaiser's as I was looking for that yesterday and couldn't find it. Anything about their surveillance? Dogs indicated that she was inside. There should be more. Also drug addiction treatment center with no surveillance at the parking lot? Liquor store right next to it with none? This is odd.
 

beubeubeu

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"Although Garcia was trying to stay sober and clean of drugs — and away from the boyfriend — she apparently bought drugs from a dealer she knew through the boyfriend less than 24 hours before she disappeared."
Oh, so boyfriend that she tried to stay away from...
 
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