TX - Elizabeth Barraza, 29, murdered setting up garage sale, Harris Co, Jan 2019 #3

CocoChanel

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I think I have been following this case fairly closely, but I do not know about when Liz and her husband moved into the house they were living in when she was murdered. Has that been publicized anywhere? Could it be possible this was a targeted attack meant for a former resident of this house? That has been a scenario in several other crimes, including the Tate-LaBianca murders I believe.

With the multiple video sightings of the suspect’s truck, it seems obvious this neighborhood was targeted if not the victim herself. This case truly haunts me.
 

Turkeytrot

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I think I have been following this case fairly closely, but I do not know about when Liz and her husband moved into the house they were living in when she was murdered. Has that been publicized anywhere? Could it be possible this was a targeted attack meant for a former resident of this house? That has been a scenario in several other crimes, including the Tate-LaBianca murders I believe.

With the multiple video sightings of the suspect’s truck, it seems obvious this neighborhood was targeted if not the victim herself. This case truly haunts me.

I found this on her social media

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MntnHiker

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Lots of good info on the website they set up for Liz. More and more, I do feel like this was absolutely targeted but that the killer was not the person who knew her/wanted her dead. I'm not suggesting a "professional level hit man" but someone who was hired for some sort of price by the person who did ultimately want her killed. My thought as to why is this: if you knew her, would you need to drive by her house at 2 AM? This to me sounds like someone who has been tasked with this murder and wants to scope out her place for the first time in the middle of the night when no one is likely around. They want to get a lay of the land. Someone who knew her well would likely know where she lived and not want to risk being caught on cameras (which it was) or encountering anyone.

It had to have been orchestrated by someone who knew her routine. I mean this was down to the minute. I do feel when they moved from the school lot to another street, maybe they needed a better view of the house and wanted to see her husband's vehicle when it passed by so they were certain he had left. I also still feel the garage sale may have just been a coincidence. It was not publicized; we don't know who she told at work. But it could be they had every intention of knocking on her door/forcing their way into her house and then came upon her in the driveway instead so killed her there. Pretty brazen to drive by again a few minutes later - they had to imagine nearby neighbors heard the shots and either called 911 and/or would be outside running over to her/watching the scene. They didn't care and drove by again as if they wanted to see for sure she was dead. MOO
 

MntnHiker

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I think I have been following this case fairly closely, but I do not know about when Liz and her husband moved into the house they were living in when she was murdered. Has that been publicized anywhere? Could it be possible this was a targeted attack meant for a former resident of this house? That has been a scenario in several other crimes, including the Tate-LaBianca murders I believe.

With the multiple video sightings of the suspect’s truck, it seems obvious this neighborhood was targeted if not the victim herself. This case truly haunts me.

BBM

The website her parents set up says this:
  • Liz and Sergio purchased their home in the Princeton Place subdivision in April of 2016.
 

Curiousobserver

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If that timeline is accurate it indicates a couple of things- the person arrived early, staked out the location, then came back and timed the attack almost perfectly with no (overt) coordination. I am completely changing my opinion of a random attack. LE has video that puts the perp in specific locations down to the second. LE has no video that suggest the ID of the person- no plates or obscured plates.
 

JnRyan

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Almost all yard/garage sales in our area are held on Saturday mornings. I can't remember ever seeing one during the week. I don't know what the requirements/laws are in Tomball. But this garage sale during the week throws me. I have to wonder if this took the killer by surprise - i.e., they had planned to maybe ring the doorbell and shoot Elizabeth there? If that is the case, the killing took place out of the view of Elizabeth's camera, otherwise shooting her at the door would likely have had a better image of the killer. OR if the killer knew about the Elizabeth's camera that was the reason for the disguise? Given the quality of the video from across the street I don't believe the killer would have needed much more that a ballcap and glasses.
 

JnRyan

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I think I have been following this case fairly closely, but I do not know about when Liz and her husband moved into the house they were living in when she was murdered. Has that been publicized anywhere? Could it be possible this was a targeted attack meant for a former resident of this house? That has been a scenario in several other crimes, including the Tate-LaBianca murders I believe.

With the multiple video sightings of the suspect’s truck, it seems obvious this neighborhood was targeted if not the victim herself. This case truly haunts me.
Good thought. I believe Manson's original target was not Sharon Tate and her guests, but the previous resident (Doris Day's son? Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys?) as revenge when he didn't get a recording contract.
 

CocoChanel

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Almost all yard/garage sales in our area are held on Saturday mornings. I can't remember ever seeing one during the week. I don't know what the requirements/laws are in Tomball. But this garage sale during the week throws me. I have to wonder if this took the killer by surprise - i.e., they had planned to maybe ring the doorbell and shoot Elizabeth there? If that is the case, the killing took place out of the view of Elizabeth's camera, otherwise shooting her at the door would likely have had a better image of the killer. OR if the killer knew about the Elizabeth's camera that was the reason for the disguise? Given the quality of the video from across the street I don't believe the killer would have needed much more that a ballcap and glasses.

I think any garage sale restrictions in the Houston area are imposed by individual HOAs in specific subdivisions. In the past I have seen lots of 2-day sales, Friday and Saturday, and in fact had several of my own that were held those 2 days. I don’t think LB’s garage sale was unusual to have on a Friday, Jan. 25, especially since the anniversary trip was planned for just 2 days later.

  • Liz and Sergio were planning to leave for Orlando, Florida (Universal Studios and Disney) on Sunday January 27, 2019 to celebrate their 5th wedding anniversary.

About Liz
 
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JnRyan

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That timeline actually makes me consider a targeted hit much more so than I have. I have held the belief that this was a person with limited to no connection to Liz because they were so brazen about allowing themselves to be observed.

However, arriving early, driving by, staking it out so you arrive seconds after her husband leaves, all fit with a person who arrived from a long distance away, needed to be sure they had the right spot, and wanted to be "on-time". According to the timeline they weren't watching her husband to leave, they were nearby. They moved the truck at exactly the right moment to match his departure without seeing him depart. That is not a coincidence.

Long distance drive explains why nobody recognizes the truck.

Where did they go in that 3-4 hours the night before? If I just drove a long distance I look for a parking lot to take a snooze like a rest area or a hotel parking lot. After-all I have a long drive ahead of me after I kill someone. If I have a co-pilot to drive home I might go to get some coffee. I hope LE got video from those places nearby.
I've thought the same thing about the distance. If this killer was not driving their own vehicle some of my thoughts are they drove it off a used or new dealer lot, repair shop lot, etc. Even a house sitter with access to the vehicle keys is another possibility. Another possibility is when I was in the military and I deployed I left my vehicles with friends or relatives. It is 3 hours from San Antonio where there is an Army base and an USAF base. It is also less than 3 hours from Ft. Hood (1st Air Cav Div.). I doubt a returning soldier or airman would make the connection when they got back. I know when I was deployed I paid little attention to the news from home and when I returned watching the news was the LAST thing on my mind.

Of course, if they did drive from some distance they very well could have used their own truck. But you disguise yourself and then drive your own truck?
 

JnRyan

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Timeline
  • Early Morning [06:47:50 AM] The Nissan Frontier arrives and pulls into the neighborhood Princeton Place Drive from Kuykendahl Road and then drives into the Goddard School parking lot.
  • Early Morning [06:48:00 AM] The Nissan Frontier leaves the Goddard School parking lot to conceal on a different street.
  • Early Morning [06:48:00 AM] Sergio leaves the property to go to work, in a white panel van.
  • Early Morning [06:51:40 AM] The Nissan Frontier comes back into view and heads towards the Barraza home.
They weren't at the Goddard School lot more than 10-15 seconds. Checking their GPS? Last bit of prep? Looking at it on Google Maps they wouldn't be able to see the Barraza house from the Goddard School - too many houses and fences. But if they left the Goddard lot at 6:48 they might have gone west on Princeton Place to get closer and with Sergio leaving at 6:48 he likely went east on Princeton Place to exit the subdivision. Wow, if the timing is like that, Sergio probably drove past the killer going in the opposite direction!
 

Curiousobserver

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Timeline
  • Early Morning [06:47:50 AM] The Nissan Frontier arrives and pulls into the neighborhood Princeton Place Drive from Kuykendahl Road and then drives into the Goddard School parking lot.
  • Early Morning [06:48:00 AM] The Nissan Frontier leaves the Goddard School parking lot to conceal on a different street.
  • Early Morning [06:48:00 AM] Sergio leaves the property to go to work, in a white panel van.
  • Early Morning [06:51:40 AM] The Nissan Frontier comes back into view and heads towards the Barraza home.
They weren't at the Goddard School lot more than 10-15 seconds. Checking their GPS? Last bit of prep? Looking at it on Google Maps they wouldn't be able to see the Barraza house from the Goddard School - too many houses and fences. But if they left the Goddard lot at 6:48 they might have gone west on Princeton Place to get closer and with Sergio leaving at 6:48 he likely went east on Princeton Place to exit the subdivision. Wow, if the timing is like that, Sergio probably drove past the killer going in the opposite direction!
As I said, the timing of all of it changed my mind completely.

I had thought that this may have been a completely random thrill-killing but not anymore.

This was planned by a person who knew their schedule fairly accurately and made a point to arrive 4 hours early and familiarize themselves with the area. To me that says they live a long distance away and had never been in this neighborhood or region before. They had no option to be late and try again some other time; hence the 4 hour error-bar on arrival. To me this says they knew about the upcoming trip. They left the area but they also were not in any kind of hurry. They were not concerned about the truck being seen and they kept their composure, driving by while they must have known police would be on the way. They ran to the truck but then lingered in the area afterward. They were not panicking about being caught at all while they were in the truck. This is a person with lots of self-control driving a vehicle not connected to them. They have a strong connection to this couple that isn't apparent to anyone. I am surprised this isn't a recognizable personality to at least one of their friends.

They did something and went somewhere between ~2am and 6:47am.

If I just drove a long distance and was planning a getaway I would make sure I had enough gas so I didn't need to stop and perhaps I would get some coffee/Redbull so I stayed alert for the long drive. Then I might sit in a parking lot nearby where I wouldn't be conspicuous until it was time to go- like Walmart etc... Where-ever they were they knew how long it took to get back her house fairly accurately.
 
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<modsnip - not an approved video on WS> It's absolutely heartbreaking, aggravating, miserable to see it hasn't been solved. I fully believe this was planned, the problem is finding out who. I am apart of a similar "nerd" community (Magic: The Gathering) and things do get really intense with people who find their entire identities in these subcultures. I think the 501st legion is probably the best place for LE to look for leads. I know it's daunting with the numbers. Also, I read as much as I could, but is it ever stated if LE looked into Sergio's workplace? The "unknown love" theory is interesting, someone interested in sergio but couldn't have him?

Also, not sure if this was stated, but from Liz's facebook it looks like she formerly worked at Hertz. Could an employee from that long ago with a growing grudge have used a rental car? I think that they would've been something the police checked out.

I'm just spitballing my ideas that I've had reading these threads.
 
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JnRyan

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As I said, the timing of all of it changed my mind completely.

I had thought that this may have been a completely random thrill-killing but not anymore.

This was planned by a person who knew their schedule fairly accurately and made a point to arrive 4 hours early and familiarize themselves with the area. To me that says they live a long distance away and had never been in this neighborhood or region before. They had no option to be late and try again some other time; hence the 4 hour error-bar on arrival. To me this says they knew about the upcoming trip. They left the area but they also were not in any kind of hurry. They were not concerned about the truck being seen and they kept their composure, driving by while they must have known police would be on the way. They ran to the truck but then lingered in the area afterward. They were not panicking about being caught at all while they were in the truck. This is a person with lots of self-control driving a vehicle not connected to them. They have a strong connection to this couple that isn't apparent to anyone. I am surprised this isn't a recognizable personality to at least one of their friends.

They did something and went somewhere between ~2am and 6:47am.

If I just drove a long distance and was planning a getaway I would make sure I had enough gas so I didn't need to stop and perhaps I would get some coffee/Redbull so I stayed alert for the long drive. Then I might sit in a parking lot nearby where I wouldn't be conspicuous until it was time to go- like Walmart etc... Where-ever they were they knew how long it took to get back her house fairly accurately.
Whether this killer was the person with the actual grudge OR third party committing this on behalf of someone else (a hit) this was definitely a targeted killing. I'm not completely convinced one way or another of a targeted killing or wrong-place-wrong-time in the case of Missy Bevers in the DFW area. But to me THIS case is most definitely a targeted killing. And that time frame between 0200 and 0647. I've got to believe LE has gone through LOTS of videos in that area during that time frame.

<modsnip>
 
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EGirl

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I can't believe this hasn't been solved. I totally agree that this was targeted and until an arrest proves me wrong, I don't believe this was in any way related to Cos Play, or whatever communities she was involved.

JMO
 

MntnHiker

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For the 2-647 AM time frame. My first thought is they went to sleep/rest in a parking lot or secluded area somewhere. Are there any nature preserves or parks nearby that would be pretty secluded in the middle of the night and not patrolled by police? Otherwise, I know Walmarts typically let people park and sleep overnight; however, Walmarts notoriously have lots of cameras, so I wonder if they'd be hesitant to park somewhere like that. I guess another possibility is they went to someone's house. If the killer was from out of town but they were the "hit person," they may have been hired by someone locally who knew Liz and were allowed to stay at their house overnight.

My second thought is a hotel, though I feel this gets more risky for the killer. There's cameras, some sort of credit card needs to be on file, etc. I doubt they would book something for only four hours (unless it was a very very cheap motel), but perhaps they arrived the day before and stayed at the hotel until almost 2 when they did their drive-by because they wanted to drive through her subdivision in the middle of the night.
 

Cryptic

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BBM, that’s what I’d initially thought and how I would do it, but her garage bays were closed, which seems odd to me. Anytime I’ve had a garage sale, everything is staged in the garage the night before and in the morning we drag some stuff out onto the drive while we sit inside the garage during the sale.
I agree, that is the most common set up. As the other poster mentioned, however, she might have been afraid of theft, especially if she was running it alone.

As a side note, a woman from our parish used to scour thrift stores for high end children's clothes. Then she hosted four large garage sales yearly (the max allowed in our areas). The profits were donated to various causes.

Anyways, she was blitzed by people stealing items from her garage while her back was turned, people stealing the clothing, and people with a strong expectation that the clothing be given to them nearly "free" etc. She then needed people to help her watch everything and everybody.

In the end, the victim's choice of a closed garage door verse the far more convenient open garage door might be based on past bad experiences.
 

MURDERER_SERVANT

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It’s like two people are setting up a time for something which can be moving time of the truck towards Elizabeth’s house from where it was awaiting .. Jmo
 

SnowAngels

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Many have wondered about the long white robe the perp is wearing. Some have speculated it is a bathrobe or even Princess Leia like costume. I am wondering if it could actually be some sort of plastic tarp like shielding to keep blood/dna off perps clothing. Something they could easily discard after committing this crime. They may have been wearing gloves too…?

I’m not sure if this has been brought up- any thoughts? They could have gotten rid of the tarp and weapon shortly after committing this crime…
 

Loudestbough

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Does anyone know if LE did a search of what phones pinged the towers by Liz's house at the time of the crime? We know the truck stopped, Liz was shot, truck drove off and passed by again...

If they can look for a phone with a similar GPS route at the time of the crime...

Of course that's useless if the suspect didn't have their phone on them.
 

ccmac33

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<modsnip - quoted post was removed>
I just heard one of the news stations say it was a 4 door Pro-x not a regular cab. I am in the auto business so these things stand out to me. <modsnip>
Many have wondered about the long white robe the perp is wearing. Some have speculated it is a bathrobe or even Princess Leia like costume. I am wondering if it could actually be some sort of plastic tarp like shielding to keep blood/dna off perps clothing. Something they could easily discard after committing this crime. They may have been wearing gloves too…?

I’m not sure if this has been brought up- any thoughts? They could have gotten rid of the tarp and weapon shortly after committing this crime…
My gut is telling me Cosplay piece clothing of some kind. I wondered about the weapon too. In cases like this the weapon is often tossed within something like 3-10 miles of crime. I need to go review my book by Robert Keppel, he talks extensively about distance between disposal of weapon and crime scenes. I wish he was younger and could jump in on a case like this.
 
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