Costa Rican police say there was a ‘sexual motive’ behind security guard’s murder of Florida tourist in her Airbnb after she told friends she was going to see him to get water
- Police in Costa Rica said the murder of a Miami woman found dead at the Airbnb she rented was sexually motivated
- Carla Stefaniak’s body was found on Monday half-buried in plastic at the back of the rental property in San Jose, Costa Rica
- Security guard Bismark Espinosa Martinez was taken into custody Tuesday in connection with her death
- The victim told a friend in a FaceTime call last Tuesday she was planning to meet up with the security guard to ask him to buy her water because it was storming
- She vanished a week ago while celebrating her 36th birthday in Costa Rica
- Her father confirmed late Tuesday that the body was that of his daughter
- An autopsy found stab wounds on her arms and neck, while the cause of death was determined to be a blow to the head
Police in Costa Rica said the murder of a Miami woman found dead this week outside the Airbnb she was staying at was sexually motivated.
Director of the country’s Judicial Investigation Department, Walter Espinoza, said at a press conference Wednesday his team believes the motive behind the killing of Carla Stefaniak, 36, was ‘sexual’.
Security guard Bismark Espinosa Martinez, 32, was arrested Tuesday in connection with her mysterious death. The victim’s body was found half naked and covered in plastic bags in the back of the San Jose property Monday.
Stefaniak told a friend in a FaceTime call last Tuesday – when she vanished – that she was planning to meet up with the guard to ask him to purchase water because it was storming badly.
That was the last the friend heard from her before her phone battery died around 9pm.
Stefaniak also told her sister-in-law in a text the Airbnb was ‘pretty sketchy’. She said it was raining and the power was going out.
Police in Costa Rica said the murder of Miami woman Carla Stefaniak (left) found dead this week near the Airbnb she rented out was sexually motivated. Security guard Bismark Espinosa Martinez, 32, (right) was arrested Tuesday in connection with her death
Stefaniak had a FaceTime call with a friend and mentioned that she might ask a security guard at the Airbnb to buy her water because it was storming
The father of Stefaniak, who went missing while celebrating her 36th birthday in Costa Rica, has identified her body
Martinez, a security guard at the villa where Stefaniak was staying, was arrested on Tuesday in connection with the Miami woman’s death
The father of Stefaniak, who went missing while celebrating her 36th birthday in the country, identified her body late Tuesday.
Stefaniak’s tearful dad Carlos confirmed after Stefaniak’s body was found Monday after she vanished last Tuesday.
A posting on the ‘Finding Carla’ Facebook page set up by her family said Costa Rican authorities had finally allowed her father to view her body.
‘Words cannot express the devastation within her family and friends. We want the world to know that we will never forget Carla,’ the tribute post read.
‘We will never forget the joy she brought into our lives, how much she made us laugh.
‘We will always be with her and we know she will always be with us. May god bless her soul.’
The listing for the Airbnb is pictured
Stefaniak’s body was found on Monday half-buried in plastic at the back of the rental property in San Jose, Costa Rica after she vanished last week
An autopsy found stab wounds on her arms and neck, while the cause of death was determined to be a blow to the head.
Investigators found blood inside the Airbnb where she was staying. Blood is also believed to have been found in his nearby apartment.
Authorities said Martinez had been staying next door to Stefaniak and that he gave contradictory statements during questioning.
Her family have been on the ground in Costa Rica since she vanished and have been helping local authorities.
Stefaniak’s father Carlos (above with family friend Greg Zwolinsky) confirmed late Tuesday that the body was that of his daughter. He cried when discussing her killing on GMA alongside family friend Greg Zwolinksy
Investigators said blood was found in the Airbnb where Stefaniak had been staying when she vanished last week. Photo courtesy of GMA
Authorities said Espinoza Martinez had been staying next door to Stefaniak. Pictured above is another photo of the Airbnb rental. She sent her sister-in-law a text message describing it as ‘pretty sketchy’
Martinez told Stefaniak’s family that he saw her leaving the Airbnb with her luggage at about 5am on November 28 and getting into an unknown car.
Her family said it didn’t make sense because her flight wasn’t until the afternoon and the airport was only 30 minutes away from where she was staying.
Espinoza said officials had analyzed surveillance video from the apartment complex.
Espinoza said the images in the video also did not align with statements made by the security guard.
Stefaniak (right) had been on vacation in Costa Rica with her sister-in-law April Burton (left) to celebrate her 36th birthday. They are pictured together last week
Stefaniak had been on vacation in Costa Rica with her sister-in-law April Burton to celebrate her 36th birthday.
She was scheduled to fly home alone Wednesday – a day after Burton left Costa Rica.
Stefaniak had dropped Burton at the airport and returned their rental car before taking a 30-minute Uber to an Airbnb that she had checked in to for her final night.
She had checked into her 1pm flight but never made it to the airport – and never responded to a number of birthday messages from worried family and friends.
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Carla was last seen online around 9pm the night before her flight, she is pictured (right) at the airport heading to Costa Rica and (left) enjoying her vacation days before her disappearance
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