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Sierra LaMar

Murdered teen cheerleader trial: ‘mystery note’ emerges

by Leigh Egan

Attorneys for the man accused of abducting and killing cheerleader, Sierra LaMar, claim that she may not even be dead, as evidenced by a letter found in her Spanish class folder. Prosecutors, however, say the letter wasn’t written by the victim.

Mercury News reports that Sierra LaMar, 15, vanished in Morgan Hill, California on March 16, 2012. She was on her way to school, walking towards a bus stop, when she simply vanished. Antolin Garcia-Torres, 25, was named as a suspect in her disappearance. He’s  currently on trial for killing her. He pleaded ‘not guilty’ and asserted he had nothing to do with her disappearance.

Garcia-Torres’ lawyers are doing everything they can to prove that he’s indeed innocent, including presenting the note in court, allegedly written by the victim. The note, scrawled in one of Sierra’s notebooks, was found a week after she went missing.

“I hate my life no ever sees this I will be in San Francisco by 3/16/12,” the note read.

Prosecutors in the case called the note an “ill-conceived prank” carried out by kids at Sierra’s school. A handwriting expert testified that the handwriting on the note doesn’t match the missing teen’s handwriting, and that the letters in the note are “significantly” different when compared to Sierra’s handwriting on previous notes.

Claudia Magana, Sierra’s Spanish teacher at Sobrato High School, testified that other students had the opportunity to place a prank note in the missing teen’s folder since the folders aren’t secured in the classroom. The teacher also testified that the students were aware she was missing and some of them made jokes about Sierra’s disappearance.

The note has remained one of the largest disputed pieces of evidence in the case.

If convicted, Garcia-Torres, who appeared clean-shaven and calm in court, faces the death penalty.

[Featured Photo: Family Handout]

Leigh Egan is a crime-fighting journalist and editor who specializes in breaking news and investigative true crime coverage. With more than a decade of experience under her belt, Leigh’s work can be found in a number of high-profile national publications. For Leigh, learning didn’t stop after college. She considers herself a lifelong learner who frequently takes media and journalism courses to keep abreast of the latest happenings and innovations in her field.